The Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich Studienwerk wants to strengthen the Jewish identity, sense of responsibility and dialogue ability of its scholarship holders and encourage them to shape the future. To this end, every year ELES offers a varied educational programme, which is guided by our ELES Counsellors and rabbis. Guest lectures and excursions complement this programme – a special component of the programme is our International Academy in Israel.
The ELES Seminars offer the scholarship holders the opportunity to exchange ideas with international students and doctoral candidates across disciplines and to reflect upon contemporary issues in the context of their own religious tradition. A type of spiritual unity and understanding for all denominations is as much a core part of the ELES Seminars as is the democratic co-creation of the scholarship programme itself. During the Seminars, there is also the opportunity for discussions with the speakers, representatives of the ELES office, as well as with the religious leaders present. The Seminars run in two-year cycles; during the course of this cycle four Seminars that occur and focus on a topic that is considered central to the Jewish community. At the end of these cycles, the participants gather for a conference to present their findings to the broader public. Previous topics have been ‚Remembering‘ and ‚Migration‘.
These scholarship holder Seminars, which are designed, planned and conducted by the scholarship holders, also form an integral part of intellectual support apparatus.
Twice a year there is also a Forum for doctoral students. It offers the doctoral students the opportunity to present and discuss their work. In addition to technical matters, questions concerning institutional and personal problems (such as time management), writing strategies and life-planning can also be discussed here. By prioritising the topics in advance, and then brainstorming them together with experienced professionals, the Forum helps ELES doctoral candidates tackle the hurdles of doctoral studies. On one of the evenings of the Fourum there is a lecture and discussion with a scientist – topics in the past have included ‚Science and Gender‘, ‚Requirements in the Natural and Humanities Sciences‘, ‚International Science Careers‘, ‚Knowledge Transfer – Transcultural‘.
Every year we invite our scholarship holders to Welcome Days in order to network, to become familiar with the processes in the academic work, and get to know the management, advisory board and the ELES team. The scholarship holders who have completed their studies or doctorate this year are also invited to these Welcome Days. In this way we create a continuity of the relations within the scholarship fund and can motivate the new scholarship holders through the examples of the alumni to become involved in the Ernst Ludwig Ehrlich Studienwerk .
The Seminars serve to help our scholarship holders gain greater awareness of their religious identity, and from our regular Shabbat celebrations the scholarship holders are introduced to important dimensions of religious practice and the theory of Judaism. In this way, they gain insights into the differences and similarities between the denominations of Judaism. The individual and group discussions that occur during these events create a space of personal and religious support of the scholarship holders.
ELES bietet der Vielfalt jüdischen Lebens in Deutschland einen Ort für Debatten, der unbedingt notwendig ist.
Prof. Dr. Paula-Irene Villa Braslavsky