web analytics
October 22, 2014 / 28 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Orthodox Rhodes Scholar Excelled In Classroom But Found Spiritual Enrichment In Orthodox Union Program


Rosenbaum-120211

In September 2008, Miriam Rosenbaum, a freshman from New York City, arrived at Princeton University to begin her four years of undergraduate education on the Ivy League campus. At the same time, Rabbi David and Sara Wolkenfeld arrived on campus to assume the positions of Torah Educators in the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus (JLIC) program at Princeton.

Miriam came from Bruriah High School for Girls in Elizabeth, N.J., followed by a year of seminary study at the Michlalah College for Girls in Jerusalem. Rabbi Wolkenfeld was a graduate of Harvard, Sara an alumna of the University of Pennsylvania. Miriam had applied to Princeton as an early decision student and was accepted. Rabbi David and Sara were chosen for their positions because of their secular educational backgrounds (both Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania also have JLIC programs), deep commitment to Jewish learning, and their perceived ability to serve as role models for Princeton’s Orthodox students.

JLIC, a joint initiative of the OU and Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, is found on 15 campuses across the United States and in Canada and tends to the spiritual and personal needs of the increasing number of yeshiva graduates who have chosen to attend secular colleges.

Just before Thanksgiving this year, Miriam became a sensation in the Orthodox world with the announcement that she had won a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to spend the next two years studying at Oxford, becoming the first Orthodox woman to be so honored. (Her interview with The Jewish Press appeared in the Dec. 2 issue.)

When she flies across the pond, she will go to Oxford influenced not only by her academic studies, but by her four years participating with the Wolkenfelds in Princeton JLIC.

“The Wolkenfelds have always been there for me,” she said. “They are like a mother and father away from home in that they are concerned not only with the Jewish aspect of my education but with the personal aspect as well. If I have a rough day I can have a cup of coffee with them, go to their house, play with their children. They are wonderful people. They work to strengthen the social bonds in the community besides their shiurim, chavrutas and other Jewish studies.

On the Princeton page on the JLIC website (www.jliconline.org) Miriam has written, “JLIC makes Princeton into a home for me. On a rather anonymous college campus, it is wonderful to have JLIC care for both my spiritual and personal well-being…”

“This is our fourth year serving the Jewish community at Princeton as JLIC educators, so we have been privileged to be a part of Miriam’s college career from the very beginning,” said Sara Wolkenfeld. “Through her participation in shiurim and other communal events, her own personal religious observance, and her one-on-one learning, Miriam has been a central figure in our community. In particular, Miriam’s passion for the ideals and principles she cares about stands out for me; even a casual lunchtime conversation can become a forum for a lively, educational debate when Miriam is present at the table.”

Rabbi Wolkenfeld explained: “Miriam came to Princeton with the advantages of a strong Jewish education and a firm Jewish identity. She has always been clear about her values and her commitment to a life of mitzvot. Her horizons have expanded through the friendships she has cultivated and through the intense coursework of Princeton, without compromising her faith.

Miriam Rosenbaum (right), with Rabbi David and Sara Wolkenfeld.

“To be a Sabbath-observant Jewish student at Princeton, who successfully completes the same demanding coursework as one’s peers with 25 fewer hours each week to devote to academic pursuits, requires a high degree of motivation and dedication to both academic studies and to Judaism. It is gratifying when an outside organization, like the Rhodes Scholarship, validates the commitment, perseverance, and intellectual excellence needed to balance academic success at an elite university with the conscientious cultivation of a life of Torah and mitzvot.”

Rabbi Ilan Haber, director of JLIC, and the former JLIC rabbi at Yale, expressed his delight over Miriam’s achievement. “I was very happy to hear about Miriam and her incredible accomplishment. I hope that this will bring her much additional success, and that her achievements will serve to inspire others,” Rabbi Haber said.

“Miriam is an active leader within her own Jewish community at Princeton. While obviously hers is a singular achievement, I am always greatly impressed with the caliber, poise, maturity, and capabilities of the students that I meet that make up the JLIC and Hillel communities on campus. With the role of JLIC to inspire, support and encourage students, I often find that the students equally inspire and motivate myself and the JLIC educators.”

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Orthodox Rhodes Scholar Excelled In Classroom But Found Spiritual Enrichment In Orthodox Union Program”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
IDF soldiers are evacuated to a hospital after a terror attack.
Photo credit: Smiley Hafuch / Rotter.net
ISIS-Linked Terror Attack on IDF From Sinai
Latest Indepth Stories
Noah and his Family; mixed media collage by Nathan Hilu. Courtesy Hebrew Union College Museum

Myth #1: It is easy to be a B’nai Noach. It is extraordinarily hard to be a B’nai Noach.

Sweden prefers to ignore its own problems and make trouble elsewhere.

The question of anti-Semitism in Europe today is truly tied to the issue of immigration.

256px-Israel-Palestine_flags.svg

Polls indicate that the Palestinians are much more against a two state solution than the Israelis.

Map of Syria-Turkish border area, pinpointing Kurdish border town of Kobani, just taken by ISIS terror forces Oct 7, 2014.

Turkey and Iran the 2 regional powers surrounding the ISIS conflict gain from a partial ISIS victory

Emigration from Israel is at an all-time low, far lower than immigration to Israel from Europe.

Leon Klinghoffer’s daughters: “‘Klinghoffer’ is justified as ‘a work of art’…This is an outrage.”

Do you seriously think that as you kidnap our children we should medically treat and help yours?

Sometimes collective action against the heinous acts of the majority is not enough. The world should not only support the blockade of Gaza; it must enforce the dismantling of Hamas.

The Arab Spring has challenged Jordan with the task of gradual reform with regard to its monarchy.

Israel offered Syria the entire Golan Heights, only to find that the Syrians were demanding MORE!

Israeli hasbara too can be described at best as pathetic, at worst non existent.

A ‘good news’ story from the Nepal avalanche disaster to warm your heart. Take out your Kleenex.

Journalists see the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as morality play: Israel=evil; Palestine=innocent

Warsaw Ghetto: At its height, the Nazis walled in some 500,000 Jews within the1.3 square mile area.

While police officers face dangers every day on the job, Jews also face danger in their daily lives.

Carter developed a fondness for Arafat believing “they were both ordained to be peacemakers by God”

More Articles from Stephen Steiner

Some college students use their winter break between terms to relax, fly to warm climates and in general recover from the academic burdens of the fall semester. Others study how to slaughter chickens according to kosher law.

Rosenbaum-120211

In September 2008, Miriam Rosenbaum, a freshman from New York City, arrived at Princeton University to begin her four years of undergraduate education on the Ivy League campus.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/interviews-and-profiles/orthodox-rhodes-scholar-excelled-in-classroom-but-found-spiritual-enrichment-in-orthodox-union-program/2011/12/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: