UCLA Center for Jewish Studies, directed by Professor Todd Presner, is dedicated to advancing scholarship in Jewish culture and history; educating the next generation about the role of Judaism in world civilization; and serving as an exceptional public resource for Jewish life and learning.
The Center has 28 affiliated faculty from more than ten disciplines, offering nearly 70 undergraduate and graduate courses in Jewish studies annually, enrolling more than 2,000 students. The Center sponsors more than 50 lectures, workshops and conferences each year, as well as supporting civic engagement and service learning programs that address wide-ranging policy, community, and social justice issues. In this way, the Center is actively preparing the next generation of leaders and encouraging real-world advances by marshalling the riches of Jewish thought, ethics, intellectual history, and culture.
In 1994 Provost Brian Copenhaver of the UCLA College of Letters and Science established the Center for Jewish Studies in the Humanities Division, under the administration and support of Dean Pauline Yu. Through the leadership of its founding director, Professor Arnold J. Band, its two subsequent Directors, Kenneth Reinhard and David N. Myers, Acting Director Carol Bakhos, and current Director Todd Presner, the Center has developed into an exceptionally productive scholarly resource with an impressive roster of affiliated faculty, a steady stream of distinguished visitors, and a world famous library collection.