Yehudah Auerbach is no stranger to dipping his feet in two disparate worlds. After coming to Israel and studying in a Yeshiva, he enrolled in the IDF Golani Brigade. After being discharged, he enrolled in the Jerusalem College of Technology International Program in English where, again, he found a way to blend the secular with the holy by working part-time in a yeshiva and studying Business Administration.
And when the universe threw a curveball his way in the form of the coronavirus, Auerbach found a way to navigate remote learning while taking care of his ten-month-old son. Below is a conversation about how he manages this delicate balance as part of the school’s international program, whose degree options include a B.Sc. in Computer Science and B.A. in Business Administration for men, and a B.Sc. in Computer Science for women — all in English.
How has the coronavirus pandemic altered your studying? How has the JCT faculty been helpful in aiding its students during this unexpected outbreak?
The administration has been very responsive to our program in ways I found beneficial. When the coronavirus outbreak started, the college swiftly and easily transitioned to remote learning via Zoom — they were very prepared in advance. In general, the faculty has been extremely receptive and accommodating. These are not professors in an ivory tower; they’re extremely accessible and understand this is a challenging time for all of us. It helps, too, that all the classes are recorded online so I can go back and study at a time that works for me.
Why did you decide to enroll in JCT’s international program? Why did it appeal to you and what do you think makes it unique?
First, it’s in English which is a huge help. For me though, the JCT Business Degree Program schedule is extremely convenient. I have classes Tuesday afternoon and Friday morning, giving me time to work part-time as a teacher’s assistant in a Yeshiva and be a very hands-on dad. The College also has a great reputation for its academics, especially in certain technology fields, and the curriculum has lived up to it.
How have you been managing with an infant at home?
Like many kids, my son hasn’t been able to go to daycare leaving the heavy lifting to my wife and me. But we try our best to keep a positive attitude. I also make an effort to be focused on whatever I’m doing at the moment. So when I’m with my son, I’m totally focused on him. When I’m studying, all my attention is devoted to that and so on.
What do you hope to do upon graduation?
After I graduate next year, I hope to be a community leader in the Diaspora, particularly on a college campus. I feel like many campuses lack strong confident voices advocating for Israel and Judaism and I’d like to do my part and continue to serve the Jewish people. Eventually, I’d like to embark on a career in marketing or consulting, but right now I feel that I have the rest of my life to make money. First and foremost, I want to fulfill my duty to Jews around the world.
Learn more about the JCT International Program in English here: https://www.jct.ac.il/en/the-international-program-in-english