Professional Skills

Professional Skills

kolton-wed These courses are designed to give Leaders, Educators, and Rabbis the skills to function effectively as full- or part-time professionals in their communities. When combined with the supervised fieldwork that is part of their training, our professionals graduate with both the academic and real-life experiences and information they will need to be successful and to support dynamic communities.




PS 310) Philosophic Guidance and Counseling Officiant Program – Developing proficiency through knowledge and practicum in order to provide professional philosophical guidance in matters concerning family dynamics and issues in executing life cycles. CR: 1

PS 370) Field Work for Officiant Program – Create a life cycle sampler under the direction of an IISHJ certified Leader or IISHJ Rabbi (can be text or video) of original or new compilations of one each of the following ceremonies: baby naming; bar/bat mitzvah; Secular Humanistic Jewish wedding or intercultural wedding; memorial, funeral and/or interment and/or ashes scattering. CR: 1

PS 390) Field Work for Leaders, Educators, and Spokespersons – A series of fieldwork projects to provide experience and demonstrate competence in areas of core responsibility. CR: 2 

PS 400) Jewish Education and Curriculum Planning – An in-depth review of how to organize educational programs for children and adults, how to design an effective curriculum, and how to manage a school. Required for Educators, Leadership and Rabbinic Programs. CR: 3 Download a syllabus for PS 400

PS 410) Leadership, Management, and Community – Understanding the role of community leader, the requirements of community management, budgeting and membership growth, and the successful art of public relations. Required for Leadership and Rabbinic Programs. CR: 3 Download a syllabus for PS 410

PS 420) Homiletics – This course develops the skills of public speaking and writing. The focus will be on inculcating significant oratorical abilities in the future leaders of Secular Humanistic Judaism, but students also examine important past speeches in both Jewish and general public life. Required for Rabbinic Program. CR: 3

PS 430) Philosophic Guidance and Counseling – A focused study of how to provide philosophic guidance to people in need of counseling. Emphasis on personal growth issues, marital and family problems, personal crisis intervention, and issues surrounding Jewish celebrations. Required for Leadership and Rabbinic Programs. CR: 3 Download a syllabus for PS 430

PS 444) Rabbinic Internship – Ritual and Community  – This internship will concentrate on secular humanistic ritual and services during the fall season. The following items must be completed during the course of the internship. One adult High Holidays service (Rosh Hashana or Yom Kippur), one Youth High Holiday service, two adult Shabbats, one youth or family Shabbat, a Sukkot program, a Hanukkah program, one adult education program, one youth education program, organize one congregation/community social action/community service activity. Four original sermons should also be given throughout the course of this internship. Regular attendance at local community executive committee (where appropriate) and general board meetings. Elements may be combined where appropriate in consultation with the Internship supervisor. This course will be completed in a Fall term. Prerequisites: SHJ 400 – Philosophy of Secular Humanistic Judaism or JC 501/JC502 – Jewish Calendar, Holidays, Liturgy, and Celebration. Required for Rabbinic Program. CR:2

PS 445) Rabbinic Internship – Education – This internship will concentrate on education. The following items must be completed during the course of the internship: TuBshevat program, Purim program, Passover program, 2 or more adult education programs, regular attendance at youth education Sunday School program with direct involvement such as teaching a class or multiple classroom visits to multiple age ranges, a family education program, a creative/alternative adult Shabbat, a college visit. Serve as community representative to one Jewish community-wide board or committee (Federation, Jewish Education, etc.). Regular attendance at local community executive committee (where appropriate) and general board meetings. Elements may be combined where appropriate in consultation with the Internship supervisor. This course will be completed in a Winter term. Prerequisites: SHJ 400 – Philosophy of Secular Humanistic Judaism or JC 501/JC502 – Jewish Calendar, Holidays, Liturgy, and Celebration, and PS 400 – Jewish Education and Curriculum Planning. Required for Rabbinic Program. CR:2

PS 446) Rabbinic Internship – Ceremony and Counseling – This internship experience will concentrate on life cycle ceremonies and counseling. Because of both personal and legal considerations, these may either be individual projects or done in cooperation or “shadowing” a more experienced Leader or Rabbi. The following items must be experienced during the course of the internship: Ceremony – Baby naming, Bar/Bat/Bnai Mitsva, Wedding, Funeral; Counseling – pre-marriage intake, an intermarriage program, a family consultation prior to a funeral, pastoral counseling (visit community member in hospital or home recovery). This course can be completed in any term. Events occurring prior to internship period may be included where appropriate in consultation with the Internship supervisor. Prerequisites: PS 430 – Philosophic Guidance and Counseling and JC 410 – Life Cycle Ceremonies. Required for Rabbinic Program. CR:2

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