Who is eligible to apply to the Maimonides Scholars Program?
The Maimonides Scholars Program is designed for current high school juniors and seniors from diverse Jewish backgrounds, generally students from public and private school communities, who wish to push their intellectual limits and seriously engage with the Jewish and Western philosophical traditions.
For students who attend Yeshiva high schools, Community day schools, or other full-time Jewish educational programs, we have an affiliate program, the Tikvah Scholars Program, also housed in Tikvah Institute for High School Students, which you can find here.
When does this program take place?
June 24-July 8, 2018.
When are applications open for the summer program? What is the deadline for submitting an application?
Applications open November 1 and close March 5.
What does the program cost?
Tuition is $400 which includes costs for books, materials, and food. All other onsite program expenses, including housing, are fully subsidized by the Maimonides Scholars Program. Full and partial need-based tuition scholarships are available. No student will be turned away because of need and the application is free and need blind.
How can I learn more about the program?
How many students will be accepted into the program?
We will accept up to 60 students from around the country for our program. We seek intellectually curious students who want to make a difference in the world. They should be willing to grapple with big questions, and be ready for vigorous but respectful debate.
At the Maimonides Scholars Program, and at the Tikvah Fund more generally, our best students are not merely with us for the duration of the program. Alumni of the Maimonides Scholars Program will have access to mentoring opportunities, alumni networking, and follow-up career opportunities and educational programming through our Tikvah Alumni Network.
Is there a way to find out if I will get in early?
Students will be notified if they are finalists by mid-March, and will receive further information at that time regarding an interview with a member of the Institute selection committee. Final decisions will be delivered by early April.
What will Jewish life be like on the program?
The Maimonides Scholars program seeks to create an inclusive and vibrant space for students to explore the Jewish tradition and Jewish ritual. Students will be housed in a Yale dormitory building a short walk from the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale.There will be space throughout the program for students to participate in the rhythms of Jewish life including voluntary prayer times and Shabbat.
On Shabbat evening, students will attend a Kabbalat Shabbat service together as well as a Shabbat meal. On Saturday morning, students can choose between egalitarian, traditional, or learner’s services. They can also opt for text study, take time for private contemplation, or engage in other spiritually directed activities. We request that Shabbat observance be respected in public spaces between Friday evening and Saturday evening. While we seek to create a space where all students can grow Jewishly and encounter new traditions, we recognize that our students will be coming from diverse Jewish backgrounds and modes of observance. At the Maimonides Scholars Program, we endeavor to create a Jewish community that respects our students’ traditions, practices, and beliefs.
Do you need to have a Jewish studies background to participate in the program?
We seek students from a broad spectrum of different Jewish backgrounds and experiences. A background in Jewish studies is not necessary to participate in the Maimonides Scholars Program.
Is there transportation to the program?
The Tikvah Fund will provide a complimentary bus to the Yale University campus in New Haven, CT, from a central location in the New York City area on June 24 and a complimentary return bus on July 8.
The student’s family or guardian is responsible for getting the student to the bus in New York or to New Haven directly.
What is the food like at the program?
It is delicious!
All food that we provide will be kosher. We will work with students and with our excellent caterers to make sure any special dietary needs (vegetarian, vegan, allergies) are accommodated.
What is the dress code for the program?
The dress code for the program is business casual. Slacks and khakis with a collared shirt are appropriate for young men. Slacks, khakis, skirts, blouses and dresses are appropriate for young women. Torn or ripped clothing is not allowed. On Shabbat, clothing should be dressier than normal seminar attire, reflecting the elevated nature of the day.
What is the Tikvah Fund?
The Tikvah Fund is a philanthropic foundation and ideas institution committed to supporting the intellectual, religious, and political leaders of the Jewish people and the Jewish State. Tikvah runs and invests in a wide range of initiatives in Israel, the United States, and around the world, including educational programs, publications, and fellowships. We invite you to explore some of these initiatives through the links on our website.
Our animating mission and guiding spirit is to advance Jewish excellence and Jewish flourishing in the modern age. Our institutes, programs, and publications all reflect this spirit of bringing forward the serious alternatives for what the Jewish future should look like, and bringing Jewish thinking and leaders into conversation with Western political, moral, and economic thought.
We run programs for high school students, students spending a gap-year in Israel, and college students, and we offer programming and content for alumni of our various programs.
Alumni of the Maimonides Scholars Program and the Tikvah Scholars Program are invited to participate in an annual Alumni Institute at Yale University, developed and led by Alumni from previous cohorts of the Tikvah Institute for High School Students.