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emerging scholars in israel 2022-2023

"The fellowship has been incredible. I’ve left every meeting exhilarated and excited about the Jewish future. Whether it be a speaker, a tour, a conversation, the fellowship has helped me find a direction for my religious life and understanding."

- Tal Bresler, '21-'22 scholar


meet the scholars

Eliana Menashe graduated from Northwest Yeshiva High School (NYHS) in Seattle, Washington. At NYHS, Eliana was the Agenda Chair/Student Council President, Co-Captain of the Women's Varsity Basketball Team, and actively involved with both the student run newspaper and yearbook. In the larger community, Eliana tutored at-risk youth and staffed the  youth program at her Sephardic synagogue. Eliana is proud to be both the first woman to carry the Torah at NYHS and one of the organizers and readers of NYHS’ first women's Megillah reading. One of Eliana's major life goals is to help women struggling with their body image and food and to be part of a movement to assist women in reclaiming their own narrative about what beauty and health should really look like. For her Gap Year program, Eliana is studying at Midreshet Torah V'Avodah, and then plans to continue her education at WashU. 

Emma Levy attended Hasmonean and Haberdasher’s Aske School for Girls in London where she was active in music, debating and chaired Politics Society. She is currently studying in Midreshet Lindenbaum and is enjoying exploring all the new opportunities that seminary and Israel have to offer. Emma has always been passionate about interfaith work and has coordinated several projects and she looks forward to continuing this work in Israel. Emma volunteered in the community as a Bnei Akiva Madricha, a tutor and running children services. Emma also runs a kosher food blog and enjoys collaborating with restaurants to share her passion for good kosher food with Jews globally. She is looking forward to continuing learning about religion, culture and politics next year at Leeds University studying International Relations and Spanish.

Emma Simon graduated from SAR High School, and is currently learning at Migdal Oz. She loves learning about almost anything, but especially history, philosophy, and Gemara. She is passionate about feminism and its intersection with Judaism, and can often be found pondering the ideal balance between tradition and innovation. In high school, Emma was active in her school’s drama society, in addition to writing for the school newspaper. In her free time, Emma enjoys reading and playing with her dog.

Gabby Yohananoff, an SAR High School (and Academy!) graduate, feels extremely grateful to be a woman studying Torah in Eretz Yisrael. She is currently a student at Midreshet Lindenbaum and plans on serving in Sherut Leumi next year and making aliyah. Gabby is passionate about balancing her competing values, creating inclusive spaces for women in Orthodox Judaism, and trying to extract as much meaning from life as possible. In her free time, Gabby loves listening to Jewish music, reading the newspaper, cooking vegetarian food, and spending time with family and friends.


Yakira Colish is from Long Island New York and currently attends Midreshet Amudim in Jerusalem. She is a passionate debater, torah lover, and public speaker and is enrolled in Touro University as a Honors Political Science Major. She’s committed to supporting the Jewish community both politically and spiritually and is excited to develop a strong base of Torah knowledge through Yeshivat Maharat!

Yona Tiferet Sperling-Milner (“Tiffy” to friends) is a proud graduate of SAR High School, the Bronfman Fellowship, and many more Jewishly inclined educational fora. She also studied at the following fine institutions: Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy, Amit Renanim High School for Girls, Jewish Primary Day School of Washington, D.C., and more! Yona, an artistic soul, loves Crayola markers and the Fibonacci sequence and, unrelated to art, when cereal boxes include fun facts about animals. Her favorite awareness month is Cyber Security Awareness Month (October). Next year Yona will be attending Harvard University, or so they tell her.

Rina Rogers graduated from Ma’ayanot Yeshiva High School in Teaneck, NJ. Rina is currently learning in Nishmat’s Israeli Midrasha program and preparing to make aliyah. In high school, Rina was editor-in-chief of the weekly Dvar Torah publication, captain of the Varsity B volleyball team, and head of the Environmental Committee. Rina strives to contribute to environments where every person can feel comfortable. She lives a life of avodat Hashem and loves harmonizing limudei kodesh with hard sciences.

Michal Berlove is from Newton, Massachusetts and graduated from Maimonides School. She is currently studying at Midreshet Amudim in Jerusalem. Michal is passionate about women having an active role in Judaism and as such has attended the Dr. Beth Samuels Drisha High School Program. In her free time, Michal enjoys baking, knitting, and spending time in nature.

Ilana Bramson grew up in Providence, Rhode Island and graduated from Classical High School. She spent the fall semester of her Senior year at Alexander Muss High School in Israel, living and learning in Hod HaSharon. She is currently learning in the Yeshiva track of the Nativ College Leadership Program. She loves to travel, teach swim lessons at her local JCC, and eat chocolate lava cakes from Trader Joe's. This year, she is looking forward to all of the culinary and cultural adventures that Israel has to offer.

Reyna Perelis is from Teaneck, NJ and recently graduated from SAR High School in Riverdale, NY. She has been a bat mitzvah and Hebrew school tutor, soccer coach and player, women’s tefillah leader, compost enthusiast, Model UN captain, and proud creator of her street’s lending library. Reyna loves hiking, exploring new places, painting, and learning about how things work. This year, Reyna is learning at Midreshet Lindenbaum in Jerusalem; afterwards, she will be at Princeton University.

emerging scholars in israel 2021-2022


Emerging Scholars in Israel meeting on Friday, November 5th, 2021

meet the scholars

Cara Lopatin


Cara attended Chicago Jewish Day School, SAR Academy and High School, and graduated from Farber Hebrew Day School in Southfield, Michigan. This year, Cara is learning at Midreshet Amudim in Jerusalem. Cara is a long-time leyner (Megillah and Torah) and chazanit at Tefillat Esther, Shachar, Kehillah, and The Atria in New York and then a children’s programming facilitator, Gabait, community-builder, and all-around volunteer in Michigan. Cara was a Bronfman fellow, co-chair of Bnei Akiva Detroit, Jewish Fund Teen Board member, Honeycomb Youth Ambassador, and Moot Beit Din team member. As a two-time cancer survivor, Cara also speaks publicly on behalf of Chai Lifeline. After her year in Israel, Cara is planning on attending the University of Michigan. 


Dahlia Krebs 


Dahlia graduated from St. Louis Park High School and currently learns at Midreshet Lindenbaum. One of the most transformative Jewish experiences of Dahlia’s life was participating in Drisha’s summer learning program before her sophomore year in high school. After that program, Dahlia became active in her shul and community by leyning Torah and Megillah, attending lectures and classes and requesting even more learning opportunities, and cooking for a local homeless shelter. With her sister, Dahlia founded and remained active in her local Bnei Akiva group, rising to rank of mazkira, a formative leadership experience for her. 


Devorah Feder


Hailing from Sharon, MA, Devorah Feder is studying at Midreshet Ein Hanatziv and next year will attend Yale College. Devorah loves participating in women’s davening and Torah reading, both at Ein Hanatziv and at home. Before graduating from Maimonides High School, Devorah enjoyed playing varsity basketball and varsity tennis, leading the Model UN and Moot Beit Din teams, and coordinating the literary magazine. Devorah’s passion for pluralism has led her to find meaningful Jewish communities through participation in the Drisha Summer High School Program, Diller Teen Fellows, and the Bronfman Fellowship. During her free time, Devorah loves painting and being active in nature.


Ellie Klibaner-Schiff


Ellie Klibaner-Schiff is a student at the Hevruta gap year program from Newton, MA. She graduated from Maimonides School and is passionate about using writing and journalism as tools to share untold stories. Throughout high school, Ellie was involved with Girls Who Code, both as a participant in their Summer Immersion Program and as founder of the Girls Who Code club at her high school. Ellie connects to her Judaism by studying texts and empowering women to actively engage with Jewish community; she is an alumna of the Drisha High School Summer Program and the Rising Voices Fellowship of the Jewish Women's Archive. Next year, Ellie will attend Harvard University.   


Joy Goldkrand


Joy Goldkrand is from the San Francisco Bay Area and currently lives on Kibbutz Alumim. Joy graduated from Kehillah Jewish High School in 2019 where she held various community leadership roles. She studied at Midreshet Lindenbaum in 2019-2020 after which she made Aliyah. Joy is passionate about creating inclusive and open-minded spaces in the Orthodox community and fostering belonging and active community-building in every group. Joy learned with the Dr. Beth Samuels Drisha High School program in the summer of 2018. Joy enjoys learning, teaching, baking, and long walks. In 2023, Joy will return to America to attend Yale University and plans to study Philosophy and Gender Studies. 


Rivka Krause


Rivka graduated from Ma’ayanot Yeshiva High School  in Teaneck, New Jersey and is currently learning at Midreshet Amudim. Rivka believes in the importance of fostering inclusive spaces within the Jewish community. She is also passionate about the environment and established conservation programs within her high school. Rivka participated in the Brandeis Moot Beit Din competition, coming in first with her team, loves immersing herself in literary worlds, practices krav maga, and enjoys debating the complexities of U.S. history. 


Tal Bresler


Tal is currently studying at Nishmat. Tal grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland, attended the Berman Hebrew Academy, and was deeply invested in the Kemp Mill Jewish community while she was living there. Passionate about politics, theology, and social activism, throughout high school Tal could be found reading, writing, and arguing about every nuance of whichever new book she was reading and that hasn’t changed during her Shana B’Aretz. Tal holds a deep love for and commitment to learning, Judaic and secular. Outside of academic pursuits, Tal loves to sing, paint, embroider, and write. 


Tifi Grossman


Tifi is a 2021 graduate of SAR High School in Riverdale, New York. This year, she is learning at the Hartman Institute’s Hevruta Gap Year Program. In high school, Tifi was active in Model UN, the school newspaper, and the Girls Who Code Club. Tifi is passionate about increasing female leadership and herself led the Women’s Tefillah Group at her high school and enjoyed leyning and leading tefillah. In addition, Tifi participated in the Israeli-Palestinian program, Kids4Peace. After her gap year in Israel, Tifi will attend Barnard College. 

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