Touro College’s Lander College for Men Offering Honors Program for Exceptional Students

Date: February 24, 2011
Media Contact:

Barbara Franklin
Director of Communications
212-463-0400 x5530
Barbara.franklin@touro.edu

New York, N.Y. - Touro College's Lander College for Men/Beis Medrash L'Talmud is offering an Honors Program designed to help exceptional students broaden their intellectual experience, both in LCM and in the Beis Medrash L'Talmud.

The Honors Program, according to Dr. Moshe Sokol, dean of LCM, is designed to recognize the dual commitment to Torah learning and academic studies by enhancing the curriculum of both. Only those students who have demonstrated exceptional achievement in Torah studies as well as academics will be considered for admission into the Honors Program, he said.

“Those who complete the Honors Program will be better prepared for the rigors and demands of graduate and professional education at the highest levels and will therefore, be more attractive candidates when applying,” Dean Sokol said. “Taken together, both elements of the Honors Program will challenge intellectually-gifted students by encouraging them to think more profoundly, to express themselves in a more sophisticated and precise manner, and to discipline themselves to achieve their ambitious goals.”

Dr. Alan Kadish, president and CEO of Touro College, concurs. “These young men will be among our future leaders in the Jewish community. It is with great pride that we are able to recognize these gifted students and cultivate them for rewarding positions in Jewish lay and professional leadership. The Honors Program is designed to help bridge our students‟ academic and Torah studies, enhancing their pursuit of whatever professions they choose to pursue.”

Honors students will be required to enroll in specially designed honors sections of two key courses that are part of the College‟s Core Curriculum: English Composition II and Statistics. The Core Curriculum also requires that students take at least one course each in Western history, Jewish history, and Western literature. Students enrolled in the Honors Program will be required to write research papers for each of these courses, as well. Finally, all honors students will be required to complete a senior honors project in their chosen major.

The enriched Torah learning component of the Honors Program requires students to learn 45 blatt (pages of Gemara) of bekius (a course of study covering more ground than traditional studies) over the course of the year.

Honors students must also participate in a weekly learning session in halakha (Jewish law), with regular examinations, and write one chabura (research paper) per semester in Hebrew, and deliver each chabura orally to fellow honors students for discussion and critique.

Finally, all honors students will be required to complete a specially designed honors course entitled “Ethics and the Professions,” which integrates Torah and academic experiences by examining ethical issues from the perspectives of ethical theory, Jewish ethics, and Jewish law. The course will also feature guest lecturers who will deliver talks in their areas of expertise. This course satisfies the LCM Core Curriculum requirement that all students must take at least one course in the liberal arts and sciences outside of their major.

Students admitted into the Honors Program will receive a minimum of $10,000 per year in scholarship funds, which covers more than two-thirds of the cost of academic tuition. Scholarships may increase from that minimum depending upon a variety of factors, including SAT or ACT scores, high school grade point averages, and performances during interviews and bechina (oral examinations).

Applicants are expected to score a minimum of 1350 on the critical reading and mathematics sections of the SAT (or 30 composite scores on the ACT); earn a minimum 92 high school grade point average in academic subjects and a 92 average in Jewish subjects; and demonstrate unusually strong study skills on an oral examination. All applicants will be interviewed by a representative from the Office of the Dean.

Further information about the Honors Program is available from Rabbi Barry Nathan, 718-820-4884/4904; email: barry.nathan@touro.edu.