Orthodox women study at Yeshivat Maharat in New York City Photo by Angela Jimenez
Maharat students, from left, Hadas "Dasi" Fruchter (Class of 2017), Ruth Balinsky Friedman (Class of 2013) and Rori Picker Neiss, (Class of 2014) holding her newborn daughter Susanna "Suzi" Neiss, laugh during a meeting with Rabbi Sara Luria, left, founder of the organization ImmerseNY, about the community Mikvah training program she is developing in New York City in collaboration with the women of Maharat and other female Jewish spiritual leaders.
The female students of Yeshivat Maharat, "the first institution to train Orthodox women as spiritual leaders and halakhic authorities," study at the Drisha Institute in New York City in preparation for the school's inaugural graduation on June 16, 2013.
Three women will be the first to graduate from the four-year school and will be given the title "Maharat", a Hebrew acronym for "Manhiga Hilkhatit Rukhanit Toranit" which translates to a teacher of Jewish law and spirituality.The school, which currently has 14 students, was founded by Rabbi Avi Weiss. Rabbi Wiess controversially ordained the first female Orthodox Rabba in history, Rabba Sara Hurwitz, who serves as the dean of the school.
Photo by Angela Jimenez