(December 20, 2021, JNS Wire) Yeshiva University is proud to announce a significant increase in funding this year for the Graduate Program in Advanced Talmudic Studies for Women (GPATS). In addition to support from individual donors towards GPATS, the Micah Philanthropies have gifted $1 million over five years to support GPATS stipend increases and programmatic enhancements.
GPATS will also receive a generous gift from a prominent anonymous foundation in support of the highly selective Shana Gimmel [Third Year] initiative for top GPATS students.
For more than 20 years, GPATS has served as the premier master’s program for post-college female scholars of Talmud and halacha [Jewish law], and in fall 2020, a Tanakh track was added to the degree offerings. Graduates of the two-year program form an elite cadre of leaders and role models who serve Orthodox Jewish communities across the world.
Through the generous support of Ann and Jeremy Pava and the Micah Philanthropies, GPATS will increase first-year student stipends and facilitate programmatic enhancements. Beginning in the 2022-2023 academic year, first-year GPATS students will receive an increased annual stipend of $7,500 (up from $5,000).
Overseeing this programmatic expansion will be a newly hired GPATS recruiter who will facilitate the enhanced pedagogical components of GPATS. These enhancements include scholar-in-residence weekends featuring GPATS students and communal internship opportunities across the country. Additional donations to GPATS will award an increased stipend of $10,000 per year to second-year full time students.
Another grant from a prominent national foundation will facilitate the creation of the Shana Gimmel initiative, allowing for top GPATS students to pursue a third year of study in the program. This selective cohort will engage in additional pedagogical training outside the classroom, teaching at Stern College for Women and elsewhere in the United States.
There are currently 23 women enrolled in GPATS, the largest class in the program’s history. Alumni of the program serve in a variety of Jewish educational institutions, holding distinguished leadership positions within many Orthodox communities. Among GPATS alumni are day school and community educators, nonprofit leaders, communal halachic consultants (Yoatzot Halacha) and seminary administrators in Israel. The generosity of these grants will enable Yeshiva University and GPATS to continue to recruit top aspiring Orthodox female scholars while deepening their intellectual and professional development.
“We are very grateful for the partnership and support of our GPATS donors, including Ann and Jeremy Pava and the Micah Philanthropies,” says Nechama Price, director of GPATS and senior lecturer of Judaic studies and Bible. “We are greatly excited by these upcoming changes and look forward to watching our GPATS students become leading teachers and role models for the next generation.”