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December 30, 1988 - Image 83

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-12-30

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Rabbi Eric Krohner visits the Beit Medrash session where students study Talmud in pairs.

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Yeshiva Gedolah Goal: To Be
Meeting Place For Community


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News Editor

abbi Eric Krohner, ex-
ecutive director of
Yeshiva Gedolah
Ateres Mordechai of Greater
Detroit, has great plans for
his institution of higher lear-
ning. Not only does he want
to make it a major focal point
of the Orthodox community,
but of the entire Jewish com-
munity as well.
Rabbi Krohner, who joined
the administration of the
Yeshiva Gedolah last August,
called Michigan's only
religious high school and rab-
binical college "the social and
intellectual meeting place for
the (Orthodox) community!'
"Our goal is to become the
cultural showcase of the com-
munity," he said. "We believe
we've already achieved that to
a degree!'
(The Kollel Institute in Oak
Park, a division of the Beth
Medrash Govoha of
Lakewood, N.J., offers college
level, rabbinic ordination
preparation classes, but or-
dination can only be awarded
by the New Jersey
Formerly a division of the
Beth Yehudah Schools, the
umbrella organization for
Yeshivath Beth Yehudah and
the Sally Allan Alexander
Beth Jacob School for Girls,
the Yeshiva Gedolah became
an independent entity in
1985 when the financial
strain on the schools became
too great. Today, the high

school/college is supported by
tuition: $4,700 per year for
out-of-town students, $3,500
for in-town students; by the
Allied Jewish Campaign, by
Pell Grant funds and from
private donations, mostly
from the Orthodox
According to Krohner, the
Yeshiva Gedolah includes a
comprehensive English
studies course and Judaic
studies program. After
graduation some students
elect to pursue rabbinical or-
dination while others go into
business and the professions.
The school is accredited by
the state of Michigan.
The school has a staff of 10
and a student body of 100 —
about a quarter of whom are
from out of town — and
Krohner hopes to add 30 more
students next year. Out-of-
town students are housed at
the nearby Rue Versailles
apartments in Oak Park.
Rent is paid by the yeshivah.
However, Krohner said that
an unused wing in the school
is planned as a dormitory, but
the school will have to file for
rezoning to realize that goal.

The nearly 12-hour daily
school schedule includes
prayers, classes on ethics,
secular and Jewish subjects;
a gym class and a lecture by
the dean, Rabbi Leib Bakst.
There are breaks for
breakfast, lunch and dinner
as well. The school serves
about 320 meals a day from
its dairy and meat kitchens.
But the school is not only

for the students who take dai-
ly classes, Rabbi Krohner
said. Six adults participate in
a one-on-one, six-week-old
tutorial program which in-
vites the general Jewish com-
munity to study ethics,
Jewish philosophy, Talmud
and Bible. The student and
teacher create a convenient
study schedule.

One such student is real
estate investor Neil Satovsky.
A member of Congregation
Shaarey Zedek, Satovsky said
he studies at the Yeshiva
Gedolah because of the flexi-
ble hours. He contemplated
taking evening classes at his
synagogue, but said he
wanted to spend that time
with his family. Because of
the nature of his business he
is able to take time out dur-
ing the day to study. Satovsky
studies Talmud and Mishna
with Rabbi Menachem Green-
field about two times a

"We talk about different
areas of observing and
philosophy," Satovsky said.
He finds the learning at-
mosphere appealing and
"easy for me to get an educa-
tion there."
"Education is important for
me to realize my Judaism and
my roots. I enjoy it and I'm
The enrollment in the
school's entire adult educa-
tion program numbers 45. Ac-
cording to Krohner the entire
spectrum of the Jewish com-
munity is represented — the


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