Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy/Yuhsb

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  • #618505

    Okiale
    Member

    Does anyone have any information on this school? Is it more modern or yeshivish? Where to students come from and how is the dorming situation? If anyone has any information it would help a lot, thanks!

    #1187990

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Its Modern, Its the high School for Yeshiva University

    #1187991

    IvduEsHashemBsimcha
    Participant

    It’s modern but there’s a very wide range of students. They accept very serious and bright talmidim as well as less motivated ones, through a multiple track system and many different level shiurim for each grade. All of the rebbeim are fantastic, many different styles and levels. Many many students come from Teaneck but there are also buses from Monsey, Brooklyn, Riverdale and others. There is a small group of people who dorm, either because they live too far away or because of convenience. What specifically do you want to know?

    #1187992

    Okiale
    Member

    Thanks Ivdu, that’s helpful. I’m A bt going into 11th grade next year and they said they most likely would be able to accommodate me but it’s always good to find out what people outside of their faculty would say. I also wanted to know more about the range of religiousness, as I am looking for a slightly more right wing place or a place with more right wing students. Thanks again

    #1187993

    IvduEsHashemBsimcha
    Participant

    I see. From what I understand, since MTA is so large and has such a wide variety of students, your chevra is really based on which shiur you’re in and who you choose to associate with. However much you put in in terms of commitment and putting yourself on the right path, that’s what you’ll get out of it. Because of the wide range, it’s not possible to say that every student or aspect of MTA is a good environment, but it’s easy to only stay in those places that do have a good influence on you. What I’m trying to say is, unlike other yeshivos where maybe the overwhelming student body and therefore feeling of the yeshiva is positive (or chas veshalom negative), in MTA it isn’t set for you, you can find both and you need to make a small effort to seek out the right chevra. I know a BT who went to MTA and it really worked for him.

    I know a lot about MTA because many of my friends went there. If you have any other specific questions, please feel free to let me know.

    #1187994

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Ivdu – he said he’s looking for something more right wing. There may be many good boys there, but that doesn’t seem to be the issue – the issue is he wants something more to the right of YU.

    #1187995

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    The OP is a BT and still trying to find his place, He has posted before

    #1187996

    writersoul
    Member

    It is a Modern Orthodox school. It’s part of Yeshiva University (on their campus in Washington Heights), which can be a great bonus (for the record, I’m a current YU student). There is a dorm as well as buses to local communities. It is definitely on the “modern” side (a strong part of its hashkafa) but it does have a diverse mix of guys. It will probably make a big difference which shiur you end up in.

    If you’re looking for something even somewhat yeshivish, it may not be the right place for you. Some of the teachers are yeshivish, but the school’s official direction is not. You will not be in the yeshivish community (for better or worse)- though of course you can probably do whatever you want after graduation.

    Most people I know who went there had a good experience- I would strongly advise contacting their office and maybe going in for a tour- that way you can see for yourself.

    If you are looking for something more right-wing, then it’s probably not right for you. What exactly do you have in mind as far as how right-wing? Why do you want something more right-wing? What attracted you to MTA? I would advise looking into Shaar HaTorah in Queens or Ohavei Torah in Riverdale based on different clues you’ve given here, but I could be totally off base.

    #1187997

    Okiale
    Member

    Thanks writersoul. I would look into more yeshivish schools but my parents want more of a college prep school, MTA is the closest I’ve been able to find so far.

    #1187998

    Okiale
    Member

    Writersoul, also I do not know enough Lashon hakodesh to be able to learn from Hebrew sefarim yet, so most places probably wouldn’t be able to accommodate me, but MTA said they would

    #1187999

    yehudayona
    Participant

    Okiale, you’re absolutely correct that most more yeshivish places won’t be able to accommodate you. Specifically, for Shaar HaTorah you would need a stronger background than you have. There are schools aimed specifically at baalei teshuva. Have you looked into any of them? Since in many cases, the students’ parents aren’t on board with the religion thing, they have to sell themselves as college prep places.

    #1188000

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    I’m definitely far from an expert on boys’ schools, but would Ner Yisroel or Chafetz Chaim make sense?

    #1188001

    Okiale
    Member

    Yehudayona, thanks for the suggestion, do you know of any of these schools?

    #1188002

    yehudayona
    Participant

    I have some knowledge of only one BT school, and it’s not one I’d recommend for you. Ask your LOR or contact Aish or another outreach organization.

    #1188003

    Okiale
    Member

    Lilmod, I don’t think I know enough to attend those schools, and my parents want college prep and I don’t think they are, but correct me if I’m wrong because those would be ideal schools

    #1188004

    writersoul
    Member

    Aha. College prep. MTA would definitely be the best solution then- and I got a bit of that from your post, which is why I suggested Shaar HaTorah and Ohavei Torah, which both provide relatively good educations in secular studies and whose graduates often go on to college with success.

    Bear in mind that it really depends what college you want to go to- most places which would be willing to take you in and accommodate you (read: not the elitist yeshivish ones) have good enough English that you could for sure get into a state college, even if they wouldn’t actively encourage it. I have several cousins who went to schools which actively discouraged college, in fact, but provided educations which, while not great, were enough to prep them for the SAT and college.

    Maybe try, as someone above mentioned, Chofetz Chaim? They seem to have a good English department, and might be willing to accommodate you. Or maybe a school like MAY in the Five Towns or Heichal HaTorah in Teaneck- still part of the yeshivishe velt, but due to being in more “modern” communities, with a greater emphasis on secular studies (generally due to parental interest, which is often absent in other places- someone I know in Monsey opened a yeshiva and at the open house was asked by a parent why he was offering “too much” English). Ohavei Torah is the same type. On the other hand, these schools might or might not have the tools to help you in limudei kodesh- but it’s worth a shot. That said, none of these schools will make it a priority to educate you for Harvard- not that you might not get in anyway (I know girls who got in from BY type schools which did not have that goal either), but it will simply not be a goal for them.

    Actually, one caveat about MTA- you know how people have said that it depends which rebbi you get? It’s tracked, so I’ve heard great things from more right-wing people who ended up in the higher tracks as far as the chevra- but in the lower tracks, you might end up with guys who are less on your wavelength if you see yourself as yeshivish. (The guys in the higher track might not be yeshivish either, but even so there may be a difference socially, depending on what you’re expecting/used to.) There are other yeshiva high schools in the tristate area, like RPRY, TABC, etc, but they may have a similar situation.

    If you’re already considering dorming (and I have no idea where you live so this may or may not be practical) why not look into schools in places like Chicago or LA? I don’t know much about it, but Skokie seems off the top of my head like a good place for you, somewhere in between MTA and one of the “modern yeshivish” places I mentioned. (If I’m wrong about it, let me know*- I only know one person who went there so I might not right about that.)

    *not quite what he’s looking for

    #1188005

    GeshmakMan
    Participant

    It’s a top Modern Orthodox boys HS, with the built advantage of having YU Smicha guys as well as their Rebbeim on campus.

    I went to MTA & YU and I can assure you will have at least 10 guys like you in your grade.

    Also, you are dealing with kids there whose trajectory has been going up their whole lives as opposed to these “heimishe” High Schools that add on English, where lots of the boys are there to escape the Yeshivishe places.

    Feel free to ask away, huge fan here! I also am involved with HS guys for many years and speak from experience with them.

    Hatzlacha, MTA ia a great place!

    #1188006

    Okiale
    Member

    Writersoul, thanks and yes while I do live in New Jersey and close enough to commute to MTA, both me and my parents think that dorming will be better, because being out of the house will be refreshing. Maybe I’ll shoot an email to Chofetz Chaim and see what they say. I looked into TABC and they would not accept me because of my lack of Hebrew skills, which was somewhat surprising but not a big deal, and RPRY would be great because they are in the next town over, although there isn’t a high school. I think Chofetz Chaim would be the best fit if it worked out, and iyh it will or someplace like it will, but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see and hope. GeshmakMan, thanks, that’s hopeful especially if I end up in MTA

    #1188007

    writersoul
    Member

    Okay, so I just mixed up RPRY and RTMA in my head- RTMA is a high school in a completely different location (and considering I know people who went to RPRY, I shouldn’t have mixed them up…).

    And thanks, mod, for letting me and Okiale know… 🙂 Like I said, I only know one person who’s gone there, and as a girl I’m already starting off with a disadvantage here.

    Okiale, a lot of schools will be hesitant to accept you because of that, not because they see it as a problem but because they’re not necessarily equipped to deal with it (all of the classes will assume prior knowledge- not only of reading Hebrew, but of learning gemara for several years). That doesn’t make them right, but it also doesn’t make them unusual. I assume you’re working on your Hebrew and Aramaic literacy, but I definitely would recommend sticking to a place where they know your level and are prepared to work with you- otherwise there can be resentment in both directions if you’re not prepared for the classes or they’re not prepared for a student who’s on a different page academically than the rest of the class, who through quirks of background have more experience with the material. Not that you can’t get to their level! But being in an environment that’s supportive on your terms is important.

    Chizuk, if wanted/needed: I have a friend who’s brilliant (National Merit finalist and highly ranked academically at her very competitive public school) who showed up to seminary with very little Judaic studies knowledge (frum family, but had never lived in a frum community and had learned everything she knew with a phone chavrusa). I was her chavrusa throughout the year, and since she was given room to grow and knew she could learn at her pace, she made huge strides, caught up to basically everyone, and is now being recruited for a Judaic Studies grad school program only a few years later. So give yourself flex time, learn as much as you can on your own, and know what you’re getting into, and you can really soar.

    #1188008

    Matan1
    Participant

    What about JEC in Elizabeth?

    #1188009

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Okiale – I’m not sure what you mean by a college prep school. Both Chofetz Chaim and Ner Yisrael have secular subjects and grant a high school diploma. I am sure that the secular curriculum they offer is enough to get into college since I think that many (maybe most?) of their graduates attend college.

    Also as Writer Soul mentioned, most people who want to are able to get into top-notch colleges with a standard Yeshiva education that includes secular subjects. I have a sister who got into Barnard and Harvard Law School with a Bais Yaakov education. I had a classmate who went to Harvard with a Bais Yaakov education, and I know a boy who went to Harvard Law School from Chofetz Chaim. Not that I’m recommending that you go to Harvard; I’m just pointing out that I don’t think that going to Chofetz Chaim or Ner Yisrael would stop you from being able to. You don’t need an incredible secular education to get into college. If you go to a City College, you don’t need much. And even if you want to get into an Ivy League college, all you need are motivation and good SAT scores.

    #1188010

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Okiale – I actually have some very strong connections to Chofetz Chaim, so I was going to offer to help you get in, but then I realized that I can’t since I don’t who you are!! Oh, well! I can wish you hatzlacha at least! And I can try to find out for you if they would be able to accomodate you based on the information I know about you.

    #1188012

    writersoul
    Member

    LUL- As far as the specifically Ivy League colleges, you can’t really just get in with motivation and good SAT scores. But that’s true no matter what school you come from, though people who went to the best public/prep schools do have a better chance- more AP classes, more clubs, more leadership opportunities, all of which Ivies will look to. But even people with the best records compete to get in, and if you can convince them that you have something about you that stands out, then you have a shot. But like you said, that can apply to anyone from any school.

    For grad school (especially law), yeah, you need good scores. I know a guy who just went straight from a very RW yeshiva (with his last secular education having been in eleventh grade) to Harvard Law School with good scores but needing a LOT of work on writing and other foundational stuff. Not that he won’t do great, I’m sure.

    Of course, if you’re trying to get into most other colleges (like CUNYs, Rutgers, YU, Touro, etc- probably NYU as well, though it’s a bit more dicey), the educations you’d get from basically everywhere on this list would get you in and you’d do very well.

    Okiale- one thing- you say you’re looking for a yeshivish place, and your parents are looking for college prep- I’m sure this is something you’ve thought of, and the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive, but have you and your parents given thought to what your trajectory will be after high school? Many yeshivish schools encourage several years of beis midrash learning before college, or doing college part time while simultaneously in beis midrash, or even going to Israel. Where are you on that, and are your parents on the same page?

    #1188013

    Okiale
    Member

    Lilmod, that would help a lot thanks, they haven’t responded to my email yet I don’t think they have answered my email yet but I’ll give them until after sukkos to answer again. My parents don’t really care so much about anything about schools besides college prep, and I don’t blame them for it, but it may mean I can’t necessarily go to an ideal place, but I guess only time will tell

    #1188014

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Okiale – as I said, I don’t think that going to Chofetz Chaim would hold you back from college, and I think that it is important to stress that to your parents. I think that most or many Chofetz Chaim guys do go to College, and like I said, I know someone who went to Harvard Law School.

    I haven’t been able to get in touch with the person yet whom I want to speak to, but if I get any helpful information for you, I will let you know bli neder.

    #1188015

    Okiale
    Member

    Thanks lilmod! I’ll try to convince my parents

    #1188016

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Okiale, I finally got in touch with the person I mentioned. He is a Rebbe in Chofetz Chaim. Based on what I told him, he thought the Rochester branch of Chofetz Chaim might be a good idea for you. They have a website which I assume you can find through Google. It is called TIUNY.

    He also thought that any of the out-of-town Chafetz Chaim’s would be good. He mentioned the Chafetz Chaim in Dallas as an example.

    He did not think the Brooklyn Chafetz Chaim would be a good idea.

    #1188017

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Hatzlacha! Let us know what happens!

    #1188018

    yeshivishe kup
    Participant

    i have many friends in ohavei torah. Its a good english school with extremely strong gemara. i know people who are planning to take ap tests in 9th grade there! Its more on the yeshivsh side though, but is the only really yeshivish yeshiva with non-white sirts.

    #1188019

    Neville ChaimBerlin
    Participant

    MTA has a diversity of students ranging from fried out to Open Orthodox to Modern Orthodox!

    My point is (assuming I get past moderation), assuming you’re like most BT’s who don’t have an interest in joining the far religious left, MTA probably is not a good idea.

    #1188020

    yehudayona
    Participant

    Chafetz Chaim is in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens, not in Brooklyn.

    #1188021

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    YY – there’s a branch in Brooklyn called Tiferes Yisroel.

    #1188022

    Okiale
    Member

    Thanks for getting in contact with that rebbe lilmod! I had assumed we were talking about the Baltimore Chofetz Chaim, I contacted them and the menahel said they would accept me, but I will probably look into this one too.

    #1188023

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Is the Baltimore Chofetz Chaim part of the Chofetz Chaim system or does it just have the same name? I had thought that it wasn’t but I’m really not sure. Does anyone else know?

    #1188024

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    The Queens Chofetz Chaim might be an option too, but the person I spoke to thought the out-of-town ones would be better for you.

    #1188025

    Okiale
    Member

    I think it is separate, and it seems slightly more liberal than the ones you are talking about although still yeshivish.Apparently other BTs went to the Baltimore one, I still just have to try to convince my parents

    #1188026

    yehudayona
    Participant

    Baltimore isn’t listed in the Wikipedia article on Yeshivas Rabbeinu Yisrael Meir HaKohen. FWIW, there are affiliates in Cherry Hill and Manalapan.

    #1188027

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    I’m pretty sure that Baltimore is unrelated.

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