What is the Tikvah Fund?

The Tikvah Fund is a think tank and educational institution focused on the foundational ideas of Jewish civilization, the great challenges facing the Jewish people and the State of Israel, and the political, moral, and economic traditions of Western civilization and American democracy. Tikvah runs a wide range of initiatives in the United States, Israel, and around the world, including educational programs and fellowships, publications and websites, conferences and policy research.

Our main interest is challenging exceptional students—from middle school to high school, from gap year to college, from graduate students to emerging professionals—to become Jewish leaders and Jewish citizens. We seek to expose them to the most important ideas—in Jewish thought, Zionist history, political philosophy, economics, and strategy—and to inculcate a sense of responsibility for Jewish, Western, and American civilization. We also offer extensive programming and content for the alumni of our various programs, and we encourage our students to think about their time with us as the gateway to a larger Tikvah community.

What is Tikvah Online Academy?

For many years, Tikvah has advanced its mission through a wide variety of residential seminars and summer programs. Tikvah Online Academy (TOA) is an effort to bring this kind of learning—small classes, master teachers, spirited discussions—to an even larger number of students through online courses. Like our residential programs, Tikvah Online Academy seeks to offer the highest-level learning on Jewish culture and civilization, the history and heroes of Israel, the future of American democracy, the fight against anti-Semitism, and the principles of a free economy and free society.

Who are the faculty of the Tikvah Online Academy?

Our faculty include leading professors, rabbis, policy experts, writers, and intellectuals from around the world.

Who can be a student at the Tikvah Online Academy?

Any student interested in big ideas and serious discussion can apply to enroll. During the current Covid-19 disruption, we have designed a swift and streamlined application process for students in the following grades:

  • Current 7th and 8th Grade Students
  • Current 9th and 10th Grade Students
  • Current 11th and 12th Grade Students/Israel Gap Year Students
  • Current College Students

When do classes take place?

Tikvah Online Academy offers courses all summer—in Session #1 (mid-June to mid-July) and Session #2 (mid-July to early August.) Every course meets once per week for 4 weeks: 4 sessions total. Classes are offered Sundays, Mondays, Tuesday, Wednesdays, or Thursdays, with morning sessions from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM EDT and evening classes from 6:30 PM to 8:00PM EDT. (Occasionally, specific classes have a slightly different schedule, so check each course listing carefully.)

What are the deadlines?

The deadline to apply for Session #2 courses is June 21, 2020. After you apply, you’ll be invited to schedule a conversation with one of our staff members. The conversation must occur no later than June 24, 2020.

What is the enrollment conversation like?

After you select your courses and enter your contact information, you’ll be able to choose a time for your enrollment conversation. These phone conversations are simply a chance to get to know potential students: who they are, what they are interested in, and why they want to participate in Tikvah Online Academy. In advance of these phone conversations, we will ask you to read a very short article or passage to explore together as part of these phone conversations. You will also have time to ask our Tikvah academic advisor any questions you may have about the program.

How much is tuition?

Every course costs $100. These seminars are heavily subsidized by the Tikvah Fund and its many generous supporters, but the course fee helps cover some of the costs of the experience.

Is financial aid available?

No student will be turned away because of financial need. The application is free and the admissions process is need-blind. Full and partial need-based tuition scholarships are available.

Do you need to have a Jewish day school or Jewish studies background to participate?

No.  Tikvah Online Academy courses are designed so that students from diverse Jewish backgrounds can come together as equal partners in inquiry. The program is designed for both students who are deeply immersed in Jewish life and Jewish education already and students who are coming to Jewish learning for the first time

What is the Tikvah Summer Certificate?

For ambitious and talented students who want to take at least 3 courses this summer, you can become eligible for special additional opportunities and programming—including:

  • A certificate as a Tikvah Summer Scholar.
  • Digital Townhall Meetings with Jewish and American leaders in academia, journalism, public policy, religious life, and pro-Israel activism.
  • Essay prize competitions with scholarship awards of up to $1,000.

Additional Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns, please email David Rubinstein at drubinstein@tikvahfund.org and he will assist you.