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November 29, 2015 / 17 Kislev, 5776
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No More Hebrew Classes in North Texas University, Registrar Glitch Blamed

UNT students playing video game in school library. Because we couldn't find pictures of the now cancelled Hebrew classes.

Photo Credit: NTDaily.com

For the past 10 years, UNT has been the only university in the North Texas area where students could study Hebrew outside of seminary. But, according to NTDaily.com, after many years of low enrollment, the program is being eliminated.

“Our numbers are not great, because it’s not French or Spanish,” Ruth Precker, the adjunct professor hired in 2002 to teach Hebrew, told the website. “But we had steady numbers around 30 or 35 for the first year and around 12 for the second year. The university is not thrilled with the numbers.”

Precker believes the program’s recent low enrollment is due to issues with the registrar.

“When registration opened about a year ago, there was a glitch in the system that in order to be a beginner student the student needed a prerequisite, which for a first-year language student doesn’t make sense,” Precker said. “I don’t know how many students we lost in the first wave of registered students. It took some time for the registrar to fix it.”

Marie Koop, chair of the department of foreign language and literature, said the confusion with the registrar wasn’t a major factor in the program’s poor performance. “The Hebrew program has not been doing well for many years now,” Koop said, and that’s that.

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.

The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.

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