Charedi degrees plan

By Jonathan Kalmus, June 13, 2008
A BA in business and Judaic studies for Charedi and other religious students is to be piloted in Manchester. The Maalot (degrees) project involves separate off-campus teaching facilities for men and women, which will be accredited by Bolton University. If the scheme proves successful, it is likely that other qualifications will be offered. Driving the initiative is Whitefield Hebrew Congregation’s Rabbi Jonathan Guttentag, who is keen to provide higher-education and employment opportunities for the strictly Orthodox. He says that programmes he has observed in Israel and America have “strengthened my conviction that the Charedi world can equip their men and women with the earning power to support their families”. Maalot participants will study at Whitefield shul and the Beis Soroh Schenierer Seminary in Salford. “Because of their Charedi orientation, many do not go to university because they simply don’t fit into to the social scene,” Rabbi Guttentag pointed out. “Some also lack the qualifications needed, while others have a full secular education but want to pursue academic studies in a supportive Jewish environment. If we can set up the right solutions in the UK, they will be able to make a positive contribution.” A women’s open evening for the Bolton Maalot programme was held recently and the hope is that the first course will start in September.
Last updated: 3:45pm, July 3 2009