Pardes Experiential Educators Program: 1-Year Certificate in Jewish Studies

Program Description

The Pardes Experiential Educators Program – One-Year Certificate in Jewish Studies is a one-year program designed to enrich the careers of experiential Jewish educators through classical Jewish text study, increased Jewish literacy, professional seminars and active participation in the dynamic and diverse community of Pardes.

The Pardes Experiential Educators Program – One-Year Certificate in Jewish Studies includes core components of the Pardes Year Program, plus: courses in the pedagogy of experiential Jewish education and applied experiential Jewish education; summer Hebrew language ulpan through Ulpan Or prior to the academic year; educators’ seminars on text and context, and Israel education and pastoral care; mentoring; career coaching, job placement assistance and alumni support.

Graduates of this program earn a Certificate in Jewish Studies from Pardes.

You might also be interested in the Pardes Experiential Educators Program – Two-Year Master of Arts in Jewish Education (in collaboration with the Davidson School of Education at JTS)


  1. BA with above-average GPA
  2. Three years of professional experience in experiential Jewish education OR MA in Jewish Education or Jewish Professional Leadership

Admission Requirements:

  • Online application
  • An official transcript of academic records from all colleges and universities
  • Placement tests for Hebrew language and text levels
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal essay
  • Interview

Post-Program Commitment:

  1. Employment in North America in experiential Jewish education or Jewish professional leadership OR MA in Jewish Education or Jewish Professional Leadership (for a list of recommended Masters programs, see below.)

During my time at Pardes, I expanded my Jewish knowledge and literacy in a supportive and warm environment. I built a network of friends and colleagues who continue to be among my most treasured relationships. I explored my personal connection to Judaism, engaged in spiritual practice, and lived the rhythm of the Jewish holidays for the first time. I developed relationships with teachers who pushed and challenged me, and modeled for me what it means to be a patient and passionate educator…The gifts and benefits I received from the Pardes Experiential Educators Program – which I had the privilege of joining for a second year at Pardes – are still unfolding for me. Click here to read more.

– Lauren Schuchart, Year ’11-’12, Pardes Experiential Educators Program ’12-’13

After graduating from the Pardes Experiential Educators Program last May, I was hired as the Teen Engagement Coordinator at the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington. I was asked to give my first dvar Torah today, in order to introduce myself to our executive lay committee – the first Jewish content I’ve been asked to create for our major donors. I was able to use the formula and method that David Levin-Kruss taught us during the PEEP Dvar Torah Workshop, and it was a huge success. Everything was very well received and I was actually asked by a fellow new employee if I could teach her how to do this so she isn’t put on the spot when her turn comes around. Happy to be paying it forward!

– Samantha Vinokor, Pardes Experiential Educators Program ’14-’15

Pardes trips are such an important part of being in the Pardes Experiential Educators Program (PEEP). The Negev tiyul was an incredible, hands-on practice in experiential education. I observed my teachers in the field bringing learning to life, I saw Hebrew leap from the pages of text into modern vocabulary and I participated fully in the trip’s Jewish communal life. Whether on the bus or on a hike, our guide and one of my history teachers in the PCJE History Seminar, Jamie Salter, brought alive the things I had just learned in class where we studied Jewish life from biblical times until 1948 and then from 1948 until the present day. In the Negev, I saw Jewish communities that were founded prior to 1948 and still thriving today. We also examined why Jewish communities put down roots where they did in the pre-State era. As a student in level aleph who didn’t know any Hebrew before she came, it was exciting for me to hear the words I’m studying in Sefer Shmot used during the tiyul, words like desert, goats, shepherd. The language came alive for me in a way it hadn’t in the classroom.

Rachel Dingman, Pardes Experiential Educators Program ’15-’16


The Pardes Experiential Educators Program is completely subsidized. Benefits include:

  • Pardes tuition fully funded for one academic year
  • Ulpan tuition fully funded
  • Living stipend of $800 per month for up to 10 months

The information on this page does not represent a funding guarantee for any current or future PCJE or Pardes student. All accepted PCJE students sign individual contracts with Pardes that confirm program dates, obligations, funding amounts and stipulations for the repayment of funds should program obligations be unmet. Please note that PCJE is not fully funded. As such, PCJE students that receive grants, scholarships or fellowships from other organizations must make reasonable contributions from these funds towards PCJE program costs. In some cases, Pardes coordinates such payments directly with the relevant organizations, institutions or programs; in other cases, the students themselves will need to coordinate these payments. Please address any questions to PCJE staff.

Pardes students usually rent apartments in Jerusalem. Pardes provides helpful housing resources to accepted students, including a listserve. Click here for more info about finding housing in Jerusalem.

Click here for answers to the most frequently asked questions.