URJ Heller High and Alexander Muss High School in Israel Announce Partnership for Growth
New partnership will boost number of students attending long-term study-abroad experiences in Israel
NEW YORK, N.Y., June 15, 2023 — Jewish National Fund-USA’s Alexander Muss High School in Israel (Muss) and the Union for Reform Judaism’s (URJ) Heller High School in Israel (Heller High) have formed a new and historic partnership that will inspire countless more high school teens to study abroad in Israel and become the future leaders of America’s Jewish community.
The historic partnership between the two leading educational institutions will further enable them to maximize their impact on students while reducing the duplication of services and facilities. With greater efficiencies achieved, more resources can be directed to recruitment, academic courses, leadership training, and experiential learning opportunities.
Under the partnership, Muss will provide Heller High students a world-class academic program and campus experience. At the same , the URJ will oversee all aspects related to the Reform experience and Israel studies. While participating in their own unique Heller High program, students will also have the opportunity to interact with teens from across the denominational spectrum who are participating in other Muss programs.
“Since 1961, the semester-long Heller High program in Israel has been a beloved and life-changing experience for thousands of members of the Reform Jewish community,” said Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the URJ. “Over the last 60 years, the program has adapted and changed to meet both the secular and religious needs of our students and families. Our partnership with Muss will strengthen both, by offering the same high quality academic experience while maintaining URJ Heller High’s unique identity and mission through dynamic Reform Jewish education courses, trips, and experiences relevant to the Reform movement’s history and values.”
Heller High and Muss have educated and enriched the lives of tens of thousands of high school teens since 1961 and 1972 respectively.
“The entire Muss family is excited to welcome the Heller High community to our beautiful campus as we work together to increase the number of students experiencing 4,000 years of their Jewish history in Israel,” said Alexander Muss High School in Israel President, Ron Werner. “Every student that comes to Muss leaves with a lifelong sense of ambition, curiosity, and desire to learn more about their Jewish community. The return on investment we make in our students has been seen for decades and will continue to be seen, as our alumni take on leadership roles in our synagogues, JCCs, federations, and at organizations like Jewish National Fund-USA.”
Alexander Muss High School in Israel’s Head of School, Dr. Steve Kutno, said, “Muss and Heller High have long traditions of connecting teens to Judaism and Israel. This partnership allows us to grow the impact we offer students through high quality accredited coursework, independent living opportunities, and personal relationships that shape memories that last a lifetime."
For more information regarding programs offered by Heller High, visit hellerhigh.org or contact Robin Kulwin at email@example.com. For more information about Muss, visit amhsi.org.
About Jewish National Fund-USA
Jewish National Fund-USA builds a strong, vibrant future for the land and people of Israel through bold initiatives and Zionist education. As a leading philanthropic movement, the organization supports critical environmental and nation-building activities in Israel’s north and south as it develops new communities in the Negev and Galilee, connects the next generation to Israel, and creates infrastructure and programs that support ecology, people with disabilities, and heritage site preservation, all while running a fully accredited study abroad experience through its Alexander Muss High School in Israel. Learn more at jnf.org.
About the Union for Reform Judaism
The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) represents a vibrant network of nearly 850 Reform synagogues across North America, which foster serious Jewish learning, sacred community, and prophetic justice. As the central address for this congregational network, the URJ speaks on behalf of the entire Reform Movement on a wide range of topics ranging from Jewish observance and ritual, community relations, social justice, and much more. Visit www.URJ.org for more.