Jewish Learning Opportunities

We are here to support you in your Jewish learning journey, wherever you are, and whatever that means to you! We’re excited to provide you with a variety of ways to plug into Jewish learning at Berkeley Hillel.

Our Jewish Learning Fellowships offer an opportunity to learn and grow in a cohort and commit to weekly learning. We have several topics, each offering unique specializations and a learning stipend for your time and presence. Learn more and apply here!

Every Thursday from 3:00-4:30 p.m., Berkeley Beit Midrash will be live and abuzz! Join us on the third floor for Jewish learning of all kinds! Want to learn how to read Hebrew? Study the weekly Torah portion? Read and discuss a Jewish book with a chevruta (learning partner)?
Don’t know where to begin and want support? Rav Maya is here to help! We’re excited to fill the Beit Midrash with chevrutot (plural for chevruta) who are learning all kinds of Jewish texts!


One way to learn is through reading. This semester, we’re giving you a few books to choose from, and we’ll pair you with a chevruta to set your own reading pace together. Every Thursday, come to Berkeley Beit Midrash to discuss together! Check out this list and let us know which you’d love to read and discuss with a buddy:

  • The Sabbath by Abraham Joshua Heschel
    Join one of the greatest Modern Jewish thinkers as he explores the “palace in time” of Shabbat. This is a great book for those looking to deepen their knowledge and practice of Shabbat.
  • Bride for One Night by Ruth Calderon
    Former Israeli Knesset Member and founder of Alma, a secular Yeshiva (Jewish learning institute) Ruth Calderon writes updated versions of classic Talmudic tales. This is a great book for those looking for an accessible and creative way to study the Talmud.
  • The Art of Leaving by Ayelet Tsabari
    This memoir explores issues if identity, the Mizrahi Jewish experience in an Ashkenazi-centric Jewish landscape, and belonging. This is a great book for those looking to diversify their knowledge of the Jewish experience.
  • The Rabbi Who Prayed with Fire by Rachel Sharona Lewis
    A queer female Rabbi is the protagonist of this Jewish mystery novel. This is a great book for those looking to explore the intersections of religion, justice, gender, and sexuality.
  • The Color of Water by James McBride
    McBride grapples with his complex identity in this memoir which explores issues of race, religion, and identity. This is a great book for those wanting to hear more narratives of Black Jews.

Have something in mind you want to learn, teach, or help make happen? Let Rav Maya (mzinkow@berkeleyhillel.org) or VP Jewish Calendar and Learning, Ben Haberman (haberman.ben@berkeley.edu) know!