Search results for: Saxe Leonard
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Since its launch, in late December 1999, approximately 750,000 Jewish young adults – more than 425,000 from the United States – have participated in Birthright’s ten-day educational programs. Numerous studies have demonstrated Birthright’s impact on the Jewish identity of its participants. Less appreciated is how the program is reshaping American Jewry’s demographic profile. When Birthright was launched, there were approximately 5.5 million Jews in the United States. Today, the US Jewish population is 7.5 million individuals, a 25% increase. Birthright is not solely responsible for the growth, but the program has become emblematic of efforts to engage future generations with Jewish life.
Updated: Feb. 06, 2020
This study focuses on two groups of Birthright Israel participants: first, those from Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus and second, Russian-speaking Jews (RSJ) in Germany. It is part of a larger program of research designed to understand the impact of Birthright Israel (known in the FSU and Germany as Taglit) on its participants. The study draws on pre- and post-trip surveys of the summer 2017 cohort from these countries, as well as on a long-term survey of participants from Russia and Ukraine who participated in the program during 2010-14.
Updated: Nov. 07, 2019
This report assesses Birthright’s effectiveness in providing a balanced educational program to participants from diverse backgrounds. In particular, the report examines Birthright’s impact on the summer 2017 cohort’s feelings of connection to Israel, engagement with Israel, and views regarding particular Israeli policies and investigates whether the program’s impact was different for political liberals versus conservatives.
Updated: Oct. 07, 2019
By examining response patterns to questions about Jewish attitudes, the study identified five different types of Jewish identity among the young adults who applied to go on a Birthright trip in summer 2018: Ancestry, Secular Peoplehood, Casual Religious, Connected, and Committed. After sorting applicants into groups corresponding to their Jewish identity type, the study examined the ways in which participants in the different groups were impacted by their Birthright experience.
Updated: Sep. 18, 2019
ShalomLearning (SL) was designed to make supplementary Jewish education an attractive, relevant, engaging, and content-rich experience for Jewish students, their families, and teachers. SL combines a values-based, spiral curriculum for grades two through seven, with a “blended education” approach, harnessing technology to Jewish education. This report describes a two-year evaluation study of SL conducted by CMJS. The research addressed a broad array of questions about the implementation, outcomes, and impacts of SL for students and teachers in synagogue schools.
Updated: Aug. 15, 2018
Nearly 18 years and 400,000 North American Birthright participants later, our latest research confirms that the skeptics were wrong. Participation in Birthright has a transformative impact that extends far beyond young Jews’ time in Israel. Birthright’s alumni, compared to similar young Jews who did not participate in the program, are more highly connected to Israel, more likely to have a Jewish spouse and raise Jewish children, and more likely to be engaged in Jewish life.
Updated: Feb. 12, 2018
The past two decades have witnessed a dramatic shift in the extent and focus of concerns about Jewish life on campus. The Jewish community is increasingly occupied with the education of the next generation and the rise of anti-Semitism and anti-Israel sentiment on campus. Outreach to Jewish students—from the expansion of Hillel and Chabad to the flourishing of Birthright Israel, as well as the growth of Jewish and Israel Studies—have engaged formerly uninvolved students with Jewish education and Jewish life. This article describes the situation on campus: the proportion of Jewish students, Israel-related activity, and perceptions of anti-Semitism.
Updated: Mar. 02, 2016
The Israel Literacy Measurement Project is an attempt to create a valid and reliable measure of knowledge of Israel. Beginning with the question, “what does it mean to be literate about Israel?” the team worked to establish assessment standards. Drawing on definitions of literacy in other social science disciplines and in consultation with subject experts, the research team developed a test bank of validated Israel-related questions. The question bank can be used with college-aged young adults to assess the extent and content of their Israel-related knowledge.
Updated: Oct. 28, 2015
This study is the first comprehensive assessment to examine the religious upbringing, college experiences, and current attitudes and practices of millennial children of intermarriage. This is the first cohort born after the intermarriage rate in America crossed the 50 percent threshold and currently comprises half of the young adult Jewish population. Based on a survey with nearly 2,700 respondents (ages 19-32) and interviews in four cities, the study finds that college Jewish experiences can have a profound impact, with the potential of closing the gap between children of intermarriage and children of inmarriage on many measures of Jewish engagement.
Updated: Oct. 28, 2015
In the wake of the Israel-Hamas war in summer 2014, US and Canadian college campuses were the settings for many anti-Israel activities, including the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign. This report has two aims: first, to understand the extent of hostility toward Israel and antisemitism on North American campuses and second, to assess the relationship between these trends and Jewish students’ support for and connection to Israel. The study, conducted in spring 2015, draws on a survey of US and Canadian college students and young adults who applied to Taglit-Birthright Israel.
Updated: Aug. 09, 2015