Learning Fellowships



Hillel at FIU Learning Fellowships are experiential, conversational seminars for students, looking to deepen their understanding of a variety of subjects on their terms. Our job is to help you explore these subjects in a safe space and find your voice, your community, and your answers.


The Program

We offer 4 Jewish Learning Fellowships (aka JLFs) this semester. Each fellowship meets once a week, for

8 weeks, for an hour, starting in February. It is open to all FIU students and will be taught virtually.

Additionally, fellows earn $200 at the end of the semester. We also invite Fellows to reflect on their big

questions over a virtual 1:1 with our teachers and staff. We are looking for a small cohort, spaces are

extremely limited, if you are interested, apply today!


Registration Form

Tikkun Olam and You - Tikkun Olam Learning Fellowship

Mondays at 1 pm, starting February 8

Facilitator: Emma Breitman // In partnership with

Hillels of Warsaw and Brazil


Together with students from Poland and Brazil dive deep into the concept of Tikkun Olam

(Repair the World) and understand how justice is a core tenet of Judaism. Through the

combination of Jewish texts and modern-day sources, we will explore topics ranging from

empathy to inclusion to power dynamics to unpack why pursuing Justice is a Jewish value. 

2/8 The Power of Empathy

How is being empathetic at the very core of Tikkun Olam? How can we use our empathy to

make a difference?


2/15 How do we Wield Power? 

Who has power in our world? Where do Jews land in this? How is power wielded within our

own community?


2/22 For Whom am I Responsible: Community Care 

What are the Jewish values behind caring for those inside and outside of our community?


3/1 Who’s In and Who’s Out 

What does inclusion really look like in our work and what obligation do we have to include others in our work?


3/8 Oops I did it Again - Making Mistakes 

Discomfort can often be part of justice work as we unlearn our implicit biases. How do we learn to be okay with being uncomfortable?


3/15 Agree to Disagree 

What happens to Justice work when people disagree with one another? How does Justice work benefit from disagreement?


3/22 Treat Yourself to Self-Care 

It is common in justice work to assume that it's all about helping others, but you cannot help others if you don’t take care of yourself first. How is self care essential to Tikkun Olam?


3/29 Leaders of Tomorrow 

Using the story of Passover as a case study, how was leadership central to Jewish liberation? Who are some prominent leaders of this moment who are helping to liberate us all?


Faces of Israel - Israel Learning Fellowship

Wednesdays  at 6:30  pm, starting February 10

Facilitator: Anni Lupu // In partnership with Hillel at FSU

The word “Israel” means different things to different people. Some will think about the

conflict, some about the culture, and some about religion. But what makes a country? Its

people. The people of Israel are the ones who made history, created the culture, and built

the country. In this fellowship we will present and discuss different sides and aspects of

Israel through its people and their stories.

2/10 Shalom!

Introduction and get to know each other

2/17 The Conflict: Background

A conversation with Michelle Rojas-Tal, director of the Israel Fellow program 

2/24 The  People of Conflict

A conversation with Mohmed Yassin, a Palestinian-Israeli student from the University of



3/3 IDF Panel 

A panel with former Israeli soldiers to discuss their personal stories and talk about their experience in the military.


3/10 From the Kibbutz to the City

The history of Israeli fashion: a conversation with Liri Cohen Mordechai, a fashion blogger and lecturer.


3/17 the Ethiopian community in Israel

Watching an episode from the tv show ‘’slicha al ha’sheela’’ (sorry for the questions) where Israeli-ethiopians answering tough questions about their experience being ethiopians in Israel. Following this, we will host a panel with 2-3 Israel fellows from the ethiopian community who will share their personal perspective on race issues in Israel and America.  


3/24 Rainbow Tour TLV

Join us on a virtual journey through the historic streets of queer Tel Aviv, where we will hear from all corners of the LGBT arch about the challenges and successes of the community from then until today.


3/31 Yallah, bye!

Concluding the fellowship with a Passover surprise! 


Torah: Rated “R” - Jewish Learning Fellowship

Thursdays at 6 pm, starting February 11

Facilitator: Olga Zelzburg Alterman // In partnership with UM Hillel

Explore the familiar Biblical narratives with your FIU & UM friends in a new, unexpected

way. Never taught before, this course tackles the most profound questions based on a

controversial Israeli satire television show “The Jews Are Coming”. Each session will focus

on a different story through video sketches, commentary, and occasional pop culture

references. Be prepared our course is rated R, parental supervision (not) recommended.


02/11 You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, nor his wife… But what if you do?

Are 10 commandments too much to handle?

02/18: God, open the Red Sea, I dropped my iphone!

The story of Exodus, revisited.

02/25: Esther the queen, or Esther the escort? 

Is the Purim story really the original Game of Thrones?

03/04 Snip & Ouch 

The touchy story of brit milah aka the very first circumcision.

03/11 Dad, put that knife down

The ethics or zeal of sacrificing your own child.

03/18 Oh brother, I hate you! 

Sibling rivalry in the story of Joseph.

03/25 Torah Erotica 

The Song of Songs or how the most explicit text became one of the holiest expressions of Judaism.

04/01 A time to be born, and a time to die 

What did Ecclesiastes smoke? Or the most mysterious, esoteric poetic compilation in the Torah.


The Torah of Rick & Morty

Wednesdays at 3 pm, starting February 10

Facilitator: Rabbi Russ Shulkes

Rick and Morty gifts us the anti-heroes the world desperately needs and probably deserves.

While our protagonists struggle against intergalactic police, tyranny, run of the mill plots,

and monotonous existence, ironically their worst enemies are usually themselves. While

many view Judaism’s perspective on ethics and morality as monolithic, in truth Judaism

enjoys a multifaceted tradition of subversive and anarchistic ideas as well, that Rick and

Morty can lend a hand in teaching us about. During our weekly conversations, we will

explore concepts like meaning, evil, and the purpose of life as we welcome Ricky and

Morty as our guest rabbinical guides along with a mix of text study and cartoon video clips.

Wubba Lubba Torah Dub!

Course outline:

- The Multiverse: Do we live in the best possible world?
- Cosmic Horror: Understanding the vast unknown
- Lucius Needful: the Devil and all things evil
- Meeseeks: Is existence pain?
- Is it better to be a ‘Rick’ or a ‘Jerry’?
- Do you have an irrational attachment to freedom?
- Does God owe us anything?
- “Scientifically speaking, traditions are an idiot thing”: Science, Faith and Religion

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