Finding the Right Seminary

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  • #1101608

    tzippi
    Member

    Rockymts, do you mean Dr. Shkop? It’s more of a college with strong Judaic classes that are requirements. I heard that they really care about and mentor the girls.

    #1101609

    tzippi
    Member

    Should have added, I don’t know how many girls go there straight from high school; I may be wrong but I get the impression a lot of girls go after sem in E”Y or elsewhere.

    #1101610

    Thanks, I guess that is what I mean. I am looking for any information possible on in the states programs for bais yaakov girls straight out of high school with strong hashkafa but still something FUN (my daughters word) going for them not just heavy academics.Does anything like this exist outside of E.Y?

    #1101611

    luv2laff
    Member

    Why is it such a big deal what seminary a girl goes to? Is it for the name? nonesence

    #1101612

    neatfreak
    Member

    about Chicago- T.I. or Anne M Blitzstein Teacher’s Institute.

    While there are some girls that go there instead of seminary. most girls attend after returning from Israel. (if you want college credits in an E”Y seminary check out their IEP program- you can get 30 credits for one year)

    All students are required to take 60 credits in Judaic studies (get a degree in this and you can get a second major in a variety of other areas ie, education, special ed, business, accountinf, nursing, sciences and some others) this is really more of a college type program then a seminary.

    The teachers there are excellent esp those that teach limudei kodesh. However they are more of intellectual classes then hashkafa- though the teachers do have good hashkafa- they just dont teach it as its more of college type classes.

    They are very warm and caring and have dorm facilities on campus. There is also a large mix of girls from different backgrounds.

    #1101613

    luv2laff- some of it is about the name. “I went to BCD”- kind of similar to those who brag about going to ivy-league colleges like harvard or yale. dont go to sem just to write on your shidduch resume I went to “hijklmnop”. dont waste your parents money, your time…

    A seminary, according to some, says a lot about the girl. From their perspective on materialism to frumkeit… At least where they were before seminary. I dont think it is a good measure of where they are a few years out and how they will be in the future. It really depends. Yes, they could have gone to Ivy league sem and been really frum going in , and they will be really frum coming out. Or they could have gone there and not been but are coming out. Or they could have gone somewhere else and been even frummer. Seminary name does not say the full picture. it is ridiculous that there are those who say “I only want to marry a girl from BCD or hijklmnop and no others”…

    Go for the right reasons. Some are meant to be in the “ivy leagues” and some are not. no pressure to go there if it is not for you.

    Realize, each seminary is a little different and should be considered for its maalos. some are more like a home, some change the sem for the girls and their interests, and some (i hate to say it) are like factories.. 150 girls in, 150 girls out and they keep to the same program. Check into the sem. ask girls who went “did you feel the warmth (if you want it)? did you feel that the sem was different from what years past had? do they ask the students what they are interested in? which guest speakers/topics did they feel touched them more and do they want again?”

    #1101614

    tzippi
    Member

    Havesomeseichel, you’re right, a sem says a lot about the girl. One thing it says is, this is the seminary, of the three I applied to, that I got into!

    #1101615

    luv2laff
    Member

    havesomeseichel-I understand ,I know many of sephardic girls do not go to seminary and they marry the best boys. Why is seminary not a big deal to them like it is in our circle

    #1101616

    Chops
    Member
    #1101617

    Chops
    Member
    #1101618

    Getting back to the original intent of the post…..

    How would you compare Tiferes and Nachalas to BJJ/MRS/BSS?

    Thanks

    #1101619

    tzippi
    Member

    There’s a lot of overlap in girls applying to all the sems BPTotty just mentioned. BUT besides the academic vs. hashkafa oriented issue, there’s also the matter of the types of girls they attract (all the same mold as far as backgrounds) and how strict the sems are in supervising. While to a parent the strictness is quite appealing, it may not be good for your kids.

    #1101620

    theOne
    Member

    Nachlas has a very warm enviroment. the staff cares about the girl. the learning is great there, the girls have fun and they love it

    bjj is rlly into learning.

    good luck choosing.

    EDITED

    #1101621

    Thanks. Does that mean “Nachalas” is less “academic”?

    #1101622

    theOne
    Member

    than BJJ?? yes. but it doesnt mean that the grils sit all day and do nothing or that they are just there for fun. The learning is very good, but instead of breaking the head and learning for hours and days for every test, they learn normal. the Shiurim there are more into Hashkofos and preparing for life.

    and i know a few girls that go there next year. they are all rlly great.

    Hatzlocho and good Shabos

    #1101623

    Less academic does not mean that they do not learn. You have to ask about the sem individually. There are some sems that people consider to be less academic and that is because they sit much longer in class and get less homework and papers. Some seminaries like BJJ or Hadar tell the girls to learn the entire sefer shoftim on their own with several meforshim in a week. Ok, if I wanted to do that I would stay in America and do that. Some seminaries say you are here to learn from the teachers rather than on your own, so you have really long hours of classes, but once you are done with those, the homework is less. You still have papers and assignments, tests and quizzes to study for, preparation homework ect. You can still learn a lot without being in an “academic sem”. Some girls like the intense cramming feeling every week with memorizing a sefer in tanach on their own. Some girls dont. It doesnt say anything bad about a girl for being in either category, some learn better under pressure and some dont. I personally would rather sit and absorb from brilliant teachers because otherwise, why am I there? so someone could assign a sefer for me to learn on my own?

    OK, now the job is to find out which sem falls where. Also, when asking about shidduchim dont cut a girl off the list because her sem isnt the most “academic”. it could be one that they learn tons, but in class instead of on their own.

    #1101624

    Being home for sem is very different than being away. One, you can learn with a blank mind, able to absorb a lot more since you dont have the same pressures as being at home (learn instead of babysitting your sisters), learn from brilliant teachers (that you didnt have in high school).

    Two, making friends that can last a lifetime, is important. they can help you with life’s struggles for years afterwards. Many people have real struggles and these friends can help one through it. I know someone who if not for her sem friends who care deeply about her and all I dont know how she would be able to manage. The girl told me that her high school friends are not in touch the same way.

    Three, the reason BYs were created was because sarah schneirer found that mothers were not able to teach their daughters like in the olden days. Maybe in the sephardic ones they are able to, but it seems like in the askenazic world girls really do need to go learn in schools. Yes, they can learn to cook and clean from their mothers but is that all motherhood is about?

    Four- sem has to be treated as something different that 12th grade. It isnt 13th grade. It is a year to package up all you learned, like take a mashal of a computer. You built a computer for 12 years, drilling the oil for plastics, creating the computer chips ect. Then you want to give it so you make all the final upgrades, add some extra software and RAM, and boost the speed a little. Then you package it with wrapping paper and a bow. Sem is that last stages. At the beginning they work hard to add the extra RAM and software. Then, the last couple of months (purim to the end) is about the packaging. What to take with you for life. How to apply all you learned in the past. It is very different and can change a person for life.

    #1101625

    Frieda
    Member

    Any contact American numbers for Shoshanim if its still open for enrollment? thanks

    #1101626

    SHOSHANIM SEMINARY

    If anyone has any questions regarding the seminary, please post them and I will try to answer and if I dont know, I will try to ask someone who does. I know many young ladies who have gone in the last couple of years and they were extremely happy with their choice.

    Here is the contact information that was asked for. If for some reason it does not work, please let me know and I will try to contact someone else.

    Email: office@by-shoshanim.com

    USA Address: c/o Mrs. Judy Baum. 2 Miriam Lane, Monsey, NY 10952.

    Tel (845) 352-6464.

    Fax (845) 352-6617

    ***They have said that they will send brochure/applications for people who are considering applying. They realize that not every school has every application (or has enough for all those who are applying).

    #1101627

    shiranechama
    Member

    I am looking into a seminary for next year. I heard about this new Seminary Azamra. I know alot of people who are applying to it. It is supposed to be like Hadar and BJJ, but in Ramat Beit Shemesh, supposed to be much cheaper. Anybody know anything about it ?

    Thanks

    #1101628

    tzippi
    Member

    Is Azamra Rabbi Cohen? I thought it was more hashkafa and laid back, and I don’t mean either in a bad way.

    #1101629

    Mirm32
    Member

    Hi! I know the people running and involved with Azamra, and they are great, solid, wonderful people looking to give a varm, heimishe, excellent Hashkafa and education to Sem girls. The staff is going to be excellent, with reknown rebbetzins, including Rebbetzin Tzipporah Heller, so it is definitely going to be intellectual, as well as warm and fun!

    Ramat Beit Shemesh A is also a warm, wonderful, and quite safe environment, much more so than Yerushalayim, but Yerushalayim is just a busride away!

    In other words, I HIGHLY recommend it!

    #1101630

    gunther
    Member

    I’ve done a lot of research on these two sems

    Bnos Chana is Rabbi Cohen- it is for girls who are not academic and do not want to hmwk tests etc they have morning classes and in the afternoon vocational training. The girls from last year gave it rave reviews. They felt they gained a lot and enjoyed their year with out all of the pressure in other Sems.

    Azamra is something totally different and sounds quite intresting,a new concept on the Sem sceen. It’s for “Heimish” girls not only litvish and not only chasidish. I am a big Reb. Heller fan and from what I understand she is going to be involved and doing the trips to kivrei tzadikim. It suppose to be a high level learning, not the “Gemara” style learning which is becomming popular in some Sems which try to outdo each other, but text learning with a hashkafa goal in mind.

    #1101631

    Mirm32
    Member

    Also, to Rocky Mountains, I went to Yavne Sem, albeit 20 some years ago. The teachers are AMAZING!!! A few girls came for second year after BJJ, and said Yavne was much better on preparation and teaching one to teach. There is definitely a lot of preparation, and learning is a major focus, but EVERYTHING with a great Hashkafa, and with teachers who really care, whether or not you are a straight A Student.

    If you are staying in America, and want a true Mesorah as a continuation of European Yeshivos, and in a warm community, then Yavne is it (esp. if you are into learning). If not, then Detroit is also very nice. Not for girls who are textual, but nice girls, good teachers, warm community, strong Hashkafa.

    #1101632

    theOne
    Member

    Please could anybody give me some information about Maalot Baltimore?????

    #1101633

    gunther
    Member

    I didn’t go to Yavne , but I know that anytime you mention Yavne to a graduate you see in their eyes how much the sem ment to them.

    #1101634

    Being an ex-Detroiter I know many of the staff members of the Detroit sem, they are all great but it is very small approx 10 girls.So not for someone wanting a major sem experience experience.There is a dorm/shared house and the community is wonderful.

    #1101635

    Hi-I know this is a liitle off topic but does anyone know anything about Sara Schnerir(college) in boro park-like what girls go there….is it hard….? Thanx!

    #1101636

    fabie
    Member

    If this thread is still alive. I am looking for a seminary in the US for my daughter. She is finishing 11th grade this year in Israel. In 9th and 10th she went to Pearlstein (Ber Miryam) Seminary in Ramat Beit Shemesh, which we were very happy with, however, due to circumstances, we transferred her to Bnei Brak, closer to our home in Elad, where we are not pleased with. I would like to know what tuition costs are, and if anyone could tell me the difference between the sems. Some I saw here are:

    Baltimore – Somewhat familiar with,

    Detroit

    Boro Park Bais Yaakov – apparently closing

    She has a very strong leadership personality, warm and helpful. Usually takes leading roles in plays etc., but less scholastic, and is very much pulled in with the crowd. She has a strong desire to make money on the side as well, due to our financial situation. Her English is not too good, my wife is Israeli, and we speak Hebrew at home.

    #1101637

    tzippi
    Member

    Detroit really sounds like it could fit the bill; unfortunately it hasn’t seen the growth it really deserves. Maybe this year, if it’s true that BYBP is closing…?

    #1101638

    potpie
    Member

    Does anyone have any information on the following seminaries: BYA, Seminar, Nachlas, Tiferes, Darchei Bina, and Chochmas Lev? Also, how would you compare the girls who go to Chochmas Lev vs. Darchei Bina? (I’m talking about personality wise rather than “bais yaakov”y.) Thanks.

    #1101639

    fabie
    Member

    “Detroit really sounds like it could fit the bill; unfortunately it hasn’t seen the growth it really deserves. Maybe this year, if it’s true that BYBP is closing…?”

    Thanks for the response. She has been in small seminaries so far, and I prefer a close warmer environment, especially if there is good supervision. I just wonder how small is small though. Like one grade per class, or less then that. Oh how funny, I just saw a previous post 10 girls per class.

    Boro Park is much more her style, since she’s used to Bnei Brak Geula type of environments, but on the other hand I assume there’s fewer distractions out of town.

    Do you have any specific contact information, tuition costs, etc. I”m sure I have some contacts there, but I really can’t recall anyone off hand.

    “Being an ex-Detroiter I know many of the staff members of the Detroit sem, they are all great but it is very small approx 10 girls.So not for someone wanting a major sem experience experience.There is a dorm/shared house and the community is wonderful.”

    Maybe you can help.

    #1101643

    tzippi
    Member

    Potpie, from what I can tell, Darchei Bina is a bit more intellectual and academic than Chochmas Lev. (Leaving frumkeit, or farfrumkeit aside.) So the girls may be more focused and intense to that degree.

    #1101644

    aries2756
    Participant

    This is such an interesting discussion, but in the end from what I hear from parents, it is the seminary who picks the girls and not the other way around. As much as the seminaries are a fortune, and each one may or may not have a different concept to attract a different type in the end it is all in their hands. From what I know both Bnos Chava and BJJ only accept a few students from each school. There could be 75 applicants but they will only take 3 for example each year from the particular school. All 75 may be as qualified but that is what they do. So even though you do all your research and decide on Bnos Chava or BJJ because they consider themselves the top of the line and the best of the best they play the selection game with you and keep you waiting with bated breath to hear whether or not you are accepted and keep you in suspense tied up in knots wondering if you should have applied to 5 or 10 other seminaries each at $100 a pop. So depending on how much money you have to waste, it might be wise to sit down with the advisor at your daughter’s H.S. and ask what are the realities of her getting into any one of these seminaries. Then ask your daughter which one she would prefer because she is not a little kid anymore and she has to decide where she wants to go, how much work she wants to do and what kind of girls she wants to spend the entire year with.

    If you don’t include your daughter in the decision making process you are asking for trouble down the line. The experience can be an amazing one or it can be a debilitating one if a teen is not prepared for it. Don’t forget that she is going away from home, to another country, on her own, where she will be expected to be independent. Where she will be expected to make her own plans for Shabbos and Yomim Tovim (they don’t make arrangements for you for Shabbos and Yom Tov, and they don’t have family style shabbosim in the dorms!). They also expect you to take care of yourself which means going to the store yourself (hebrew speaking makolets) buying groceries (mostly labeled in hebrew) converting your own money and making change, and cooking and feeding yourselves. In most of the stricter seminaries there is a dress code and as mentioned some actually have uniforms and they lock the girls into the building at night. Seriously, the doors are locked so they can’t get out. Many have dorms or apartments where there are no elevators and the girls are walking and shlepping their belongings, books and laundry up 4, 5, even 8 floors. If you make the decision for your daughter and she has no input then it is you who are to blame for all the hardships and inconveniences that fall upon her at the particular seminary you chose. However, if she chooses or you make the decision together, then she has an equal share in the responsibility. In addition and even more important, when she chooses she is responsible to herself to do the best she can and to enjoy what she is doing. If you “send” her, then she is responsible to do it for you and make you proud of her that adds additional pressure on her and believe me there is enough pressure in the top seminaries.

    If your daughter is homesick or unhappy at the seminary she will gravitate to girls from other seminaries who will sympathize with her and offer her empathy. These might not be the type of girls you initially intended for her to be friends with or spend the year with. She will be happy to spend Shabbosim with them, etc. The Seminary can not and does not supervise the girls as much as you think they do, after all they expect them to be mature young adults worthy of that seminary. Teens who are unhappy can get themselves into uncomfortable situations when they are on their own far away from their families. So please it is more important to ask your daughter where she wants to go and what she knows about these seminaries from her friends, she should do her on investigations as well. Her opinion is really so much more important than ours.

    #1101645

    nfp4u
    Member

    The difference is ” pennies”

    one charges $15,000 and gives food, and others charge $16,000 and don’t give food or toilette paper.

    choose your weapons, cofused tatty, but make sure you have the cash to pay for it!!!!

    #1101646

    bombmaniac
    Participant

    its too bad chofetz chaim doesnt have a seminary (as far as i know) or id say CC…lol

    #1101647

    potpie
    Member

    Tzippi, thank you for your reply, I already knew that Darchei Bina was more academic than Chochmas Lev. However, I’ve heard that the girls who go to Darchei Bina are good, solid girls, albeit not Bais Yaakovy. What I really meant to ask was: Do the same type of girls also go to Chochmas Lev? Or does Chochmas Lev attract a different type of girl? Thanks.

    In addition, to reiterate: Does anyone have any information on BYA, Seminar, Nachlas, and Tiferes? (I’m more interested in the last 2 but would appreciate info on all 4.)

    #1101648

    tzippi
    Member

    Hard to give you an answer. I do know that the local girls who went to Darchei Bina have excellent middos, academically focused, and more likely to marry working boys (i.e. no kollel) than the Chochmas Lev girls. Not a judgment call, just trying to clarify who goes. The CL girls have excellent middos and are solid academically too, BTW 😉

    #1101649

    theOne
    Member

    potpie: i have about 7-8 girls in my class that applied this year for Nachlas. Nachlas is academic, but the Hashkofos are great. My friends that applied are all girls from good homes, Bais Yaakov style. Its outakownish, unlike Tiferes.

    I think that Seminar and BYA are more open.

    fabie: heared about Yavne, Cleveland? its a very good seminary. the stuff is very warm, its yeshivish. but i think that they are very into studing and learning… not sure.

    OR: Maalot Baltimore. its a two year program, but you can stay for one year only. the place itself is yeshivish but more open than cleavlend.

    Hatzlocho finding the right place…

    #1101650

    potpie
    Member

    Thank you Tzippi. Do all the Chochmas Lev girls marry kollel boys? And would you consider the Darchei Bina girls to be modern?

    theOne, what do you mean when you say that Seminar and BYA are more open? In terms of hashkafos? because that’s not what I had heard.

    #1101651

    tzippi
    Member

    Oooh, I knew I was gonna get in trouble for that run. I have a good friend whose daughter went to CL and she’s davka looking for a working boy. I wouldn’t call that modern. And I wouldn’t necessarily call all DB girls modern. Just trying to give you a thumbnail sketch of the shnit.

    #1101652

    potpie
    Member

    Tzippi, let me clarify where I stand. I happen to agree with you. I want a working boy. I just want to make sure that Chochmas Lev won’t pressure me into marrying kollel. And I definitely don’t consider myself modern, just realistic!

    And what I meant about Darchei Bina girls being modern is that the girls who apply there from my school happen to be very modern. But girls that I know who went to Darchei Bina happened to not be modern at all. And people have been recommending Darchei Bina to me as not so modern, but my friends all think that it is. And I also happen to want a Bais Yaakov seminary. So I’m just trying to clarify which one would be a better fit for me. I think what I really want is advantages of Darchei Bina with frummer girls-could this be a description of Chochmas Lev? I know that Chochmas Lev isn’t as academic as Darchei Bina-but is the academic level close, or are they not comparable?

    Thanks so much for all your help, Tzippi.

    #1101653

    tzippi
    Member

    DB has some of the best teachers around – Shira Smiles, Rabbi Orlofsky (at least it used to). I have to say that CL has phenomenal teachers too.

    As far as being pressured – nonsense. You know who you are, and you will be embarking on shidduchim well past sem. Will they give you food for thought? Sure. I know of lots of Michlala/Stern grads who are supporting their husbands in kollel. Lines are blurring, in a way.

    #1101654

    oomis
    Participant

    I know girls who went to DB and they LOVED it. They are very lovely, temimusdig girls, serious about Limudei Kodesh, and with incredible middos. DB is a fine seminary.

    #1101655

    potpie
    Member

    So are you saying that Chochmas Lev is just as good a seminary as Darchei Bina and therefore a better fit for me?

    #1101656

    tzippi
    Member

    Potpie, to answer your questions –

    yes, it is as good

    and I have no idea what’s the better fit.

    #1101657

    potpie
    Member

    If I want a Bais Yaakov version of Darchei Bina, would you consider that to be Chochmas Lev or some other seminary?

    #1101658

    potpie
    Member

    Does anyone have any information on the following seminaries: BYA, Seminar, Nachlas, Tiferes, Meohr, and Bnos Chava?

    Which ones would you consider to be academice?

    Which ones are academic without the pressure (or does this not exist)?

    Are there are seminaries that fall into this category that I did not include?

    Last question-which seminaries would you say are similar to Meohr? (although I know that Meohr is a unique experience)

    Thanks so much for all your anticipated help.

    EDITED

    #1101659

    Any knowledge of Bais Yaakov Mezuraz seminary?

    #1101660

    fabie
    Member

    Could someone provide contacts and tuition fees for at least Detroit and Cleveland, either public or by emailing me, thanks in advance!

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