ALEPH Ordination Program Intensive Study Week – aka "Smicha Week"

Sunday June 28 to Sunday July 5, 2020

retreat cancelled - stay-tuned for alternative plan!


  • An amazing opportunity to spend an intensive, spiritually uplifting, intellectually stimulating week of learning with your fellow AOP students!
  • Study with members of the VAAD and special guest teachers. Meet informally with them and your Director of Studies.
  • Surround yourself with constant hevruta, in small classes and informal groups. Earn 2 units of credit for full participation in the week's learning.
  • Soar with daily student-led davenen! Sign up to lead or co-lead, and to receive feedback on new approaches from ALEPH teachers.
NOTE: Smicha Week is open to ordination students of the ALEPH Ordination Program (AOP) who are currently enrolled, as well as candidates whose application is in process. AOP students attend Smicha Week as part of their curriculum requirements. If you are a candidate for one of our smicha/ordination programs, a letter of invitation from Rabbi Leila Gal Berner, Dean of Students, is prerequisite for registering for Smicha Week.
ALEPH musmachim and OHALAH members are welcome to join us at Smicha Week at a discounted rate. If you would like to register, please call Ming at (215) 247-9700 x210.


Many of the classes offered this summer reflect new content and new approaches to traditional texts developed by VAAD members and invited guests.
Smicha Week is a place for experimentation. We invite you to use the daily davenen leadership as a spiritual laboratory. Lead from your growing edge. How are you called to guide a community in the davenen experience? We are asking you to think in terms of different modalities and approaches. Make the best use of this laboratory.
The Smicha Week task force and VAAD are designing an all-new Beit Midrash program that will bring together students from all programs, to study texts and concepts introduced by our faculty and intended not for specific classes but for the entire summer student body.