Midreshet Amudim is for young women on a quest for TRUTH and MEANING.
Amudim aims for each talmida to dive deeply into the sea of Torah, engage in textual analysis and philosophical exploration to come to an understanding of what God wants from her while developing a personal relationship with God, religious and spiritual identity, and commitment to LIVING LIFE PROFOUNDLY.
Amudim’s mission includes:
Explore Jewish texts and ideas with nuance, depth and intellectual honesty.
Formulate your own interpretations, draw comparisons, apply theory and uncover meaning.
With love and care for their talmidot and the firm belief that every student deserves to live a life of profundity, Amudim teachers forge deep personal relationships, whether through formal and informal discussions or by having students over for Shabbat, guiding them to uncover their own sense of meaning within Torah and Judaism.
Our students’ most important asset is...Themselves! At Amudim, creativity is celebrated as students carve their own paths, make Torah their own and pursue interests inside and outside the Beit Midrash.
Amudim fosters a sense of mutual respect and closeness among our students, via interactive and discussion-based classes, apartment-style communal living, personalized programming, and fun and exciting student-generated and centered activities.
Amudim’s nurtures a Torah personality, helping each student internalize and process what she is learning and understand how it can be incorporated into the modern world and her personal life, beyond her year in Israel.
Amudim inspires students to value the Land of Israel’s spiritual dimensions, the roles it plays in Jewish history and Jewish identity, and to truly experience contemporary life in Israel.
Attitude Towards Israel and Medinat Yisrael
Amudim maintains a strongly Religious Zionist/Dati Leumi outlook and approach, inspiring students to value the Land of Israel’s spiritual dimensions, the roles it plays in Jewish history and the shaping of Jewish identity, and to truly experience contemporary life in Israel. A special course in Israel studies provides an in-depth understanding of the Zionist narrative and addresses complex issues head-on so that students gain the knowledge to effectively articulate an informed position regarding one of the longest running modern conflicts. In addition, many other shiurim, lectures, tiyulim, chagim, internships and activities at Amudim are designed to provoke thought and discussion regarding the religious significance of the land of Israel, Israeli politics, military service, and Israel advocacy, as well as deepen the physical and spiritual connection to our homeland.
Attitude Towards Extracurricular Activities
With an eye towards developing an association between Torah learning and communal responsibility, Amudim features a unique internship/hitnadvut (volunteer) program which requires students to contribute to Israeli society through taking up internships or devote time and energy to the underprivileged or mentally or physically challenged. Pursuing internships just as they would a regular job, students have worked in the following fields, amongst others: Medicine, archaeology, the arts, animal care, writing, nutrition, STEM, education, start-ups, curatorial/museum work, libraries and more. These internships have been foundational to students’ understanding of self and the roles they can play in the broader Jewish and Israeli community. In addition to individualized internships, Amudim arranges for the student body to engage in chesed activities together (e.g. Tomchei Shabbat, pantry packing, medical clowning etc) throughout the year.
Amudim also encourages students to participate in events deemed beneficial to their spiritual development or physical health, such as inter-seminary concerts, shiurim and competitions, and the Jerusalem marathon.
The "Successful" Student
At Amudim, on an intellectual level, we consider it a success when our students learn to think critically about every text (defined broadly) they encounter and come specially to appreciate the profundity, complexity, brilliance and truth of Torah. Even after their time at Amudim, our talmidot integrate Torah learning into their everyday lives and take on leadership roles in their campus Torah communities.
When it comes to spirituality, the “successful” student feels connected to God, Torah and mitzvot, and has a sense of belonging to the people and Land of Israel. She has a sense of purpose and has developed an understanding of and a drive toward fulfilling her unique destiny, as well as the confidence that she maintains the wherewithal to create a religious experience for herself, no matter where she finds herself in life, through Talmud Torah, tefillah and ma’asim tovim.In addition to developing their positive middot, especially on a bein adam le-chavro plain, Amudim emphasizes creativity, resourcefulness, independence and empowered to take on all kinds of life challenges. The successful graduate of Amudim views every aspect of life as an opportunity to expand her spiritual horizons, learn and grow.
The greatest success occurs when students are empowered to contribute to the conversation on Jewish texts and ideas, become leaders of Klal Yisrael, and when the attachment to Torah learning leads to a deepened connection with God.
Spiritual, intellectual and emotional maturity during the year at Amudim is nurtured by and often depends upon the establishment of strong personal bonds between students and staff, including teachers, administrators, Ram’im, and madrichot. While all teachers are available to discuss whatever is on students’ minds and welcome the chance to spend time with students outside of shiurim (including Shabbatot at their homes), several staff members maintain a regular presence on campus and purposefully remain accessible to lend a hand or an ear, and sometimes a shoulder to cry on, and address any and all student needs. These include:
Amudim’s weekly schedule is divided between shiurim that revolve around classical Torah texts and classes that focus on philosophical or cultural topics.
Mornings are more devoted to the former, with sedarim and shiurim in Gemara, halachah and Tanakh during which time our Beit Midrash resonates with a kol Torah, as students study be-chavruta in anticipation of an in-depth, analytical shiur.
Afternoons are generally devoted to the more specialized philosophical and culture-centered classes, such as “Theories of God,” “Pirkei Avot for Thinkers,” “Jewish Art in Theory and Practice,” “Spirituality and Torah Study,” “Science and Religion,” “Intro to Kabbalah,” “Philosophy of Prayer,” “Body, Beauty and Dress,” “Jewish Ethics” and “Great Jewish Schisms and Controversies.”
In addition to more formal text-based and philosophical classes, Amudim’s weekly schedule includes learning outside of the “dalet amot” of the Beit Midrash, including Krav Maga which gets students moving outdoors, “Torat Chayim” hands-on/experiential classes which take place in various locations around Jerusalem on Mondays, and internships which occur each Wednesday afternoon.
Evenings include “Night Seder” bekiyut shiurim and independent Beit Midrash study (3x/week), the Amudim Seminar, which introduces students to leading Jewish thinkers in Israel (1x/week), and more haskafically-oriented classes such as “The Meaning of Shabbat” and “The Soul of Kashrut” (1x/week).
Ulpan or Hebrew Class
As part of our commitment to strong textual learning and engagement with the larger Jewish world, Amudim offers classes that hone and advance students’ Hebrew language skills, at both textual and conversational levels. In addition to internships as well as classes at Amudim taught Ivrit be-Ivrit, where students have the opportunity to organically develop their Hebrew speaking skills, Amudim requires each student to participate in the following two innovative and exciting courses aimed at improving upon their Hebrew:
Taking a new approach toward the acquisition of Hebrew-speaking skills, Amudim, in collaboration with the "Speak to Me!" program partners each student with a native Hebrew speaker for weekly meetings in which they converse entirely in Hebrew. All conversations are conducted at the same time in the Midrasha and revolve around a given theme each week. Light refreshments are included!
In another new approach toward developing Hebrew language skills, Amudim, in collaboration with "Modern Books," publisher of simplified translations of classical English novels for those who desire to improve their Hebrew reading skills and, for the first time, complete reading a novel in Hebrew, has developed a curriculum for the communal reading and weekly discussion of the translated version of "Around the World in Eighty Days."
Amudim offers a highly individualized Shana Bet program. The uniqueness of this program at Amudim provides students who have already spent a year in Israel with the opportunity to build upon the foundation they have received, build skills for lifelong independent Torah study, and think higher and more deeply. Shana Bet students interact closely with faculty, in special shiurim and private chavrutot, as well as the illustrious scholars and artists who lead the weekly Amudim seminars. Shana Bet students also serve as mentors to first-year students by delivering shiurim and helping them adjust to midrasha life. Throughout their Shana Bet, they crystallize their own approaches to learning and Jewish life and inspire others with their ideas and passion.
Programming for Shabbat and Yom Tov
At Amudim, many of the chagim—Yom Kippur, Simchat Torah, Hanukah, Purim, Yom Ha’atzmaut, Yom Yerushalayim, and Shavuot—are celebrated together, allowing students to experience beauty, flavor and intensity of chag in Israel while being joined by teachers who deliver special shiurim, participate in panel discussions or lead student-centered activities and chagigot throughout the day.
Three different types of Shabbat schedules allow students to make the most out of Shabbat in Israel.
• IN SHABBATOT: Once every 3-4 weeks, the entire midrasha spends Shabbat together in Jerusalem.
• OUT SHABBATOT: “Free” Shabbatot where students are encouraged to visit friends and relatives or explore new places in Israel for Shabbat and to recharge their batteries.*
• SHABBATONIM: The entire midrasha spends Shabbat together in locations throughout Israel, encountering and interacting with people from walks of life other than our own.
*Amudim apartments never close, so that students can also opt to spend out-Shabbatot together in the apartments with each other or host other friends there. Amudim provides 3 meals a day during the week and on Shabbatonim, yet apartments are equipped with full kitchens so that students may prepare meals on their own whenever they desire, including hosting their friends in their apartments during out-Shabbatot.
Level of Learning Offered: Intermediate and Advanced (though students who lack strong textual background but are highly motivated succeed at Amudim).
Hebrew Knowledge Required: Mainstream Modern Orthodox Yeshiva Day School Level.
Religious Observance Required: Commitment to mitzvot and adherence to the Midrasha’s halachic standards.
Type of Student
Amudim attracts very bright, deep-thinking, highly motivated young women from mainstream Modern Orthodox high schools across the US, as well as from Canada and the UK. Students tend to be halakhically committed critical thinkers looking to examine Torah concepts and texts in a sophisticated and intellectually honest way. Amudim students are graduates of schools such as Ma’ayanot, SAR, Frisch, Central, SKA, Kushner, Berman, AJA, Ida Crown, YULA, Shalhevet, Kohelet, Beren, Farber Akiba, AJA, Ulpanat Orot and Hasmonean.
Overall Number of Students
Other Nationalities: Canada and UK
Israel Street Address:
17 Rachel Imenu Street
German Colony, Jerusalem
Email: [email protected]