Founded in 1999, Abraham Geiger College is the first liberal rabbinical seminary in Continental Europe since the Shoah. In response to the urgent need for academic rabbinical and cantorial training, it provides progressive, enlightened and modern spiritual leadership for Europe and beyond

Our college stands in the tradition of the Hochschule für die Wissenschaft des Judentums (Higher Institute for the Science of Judaism) in Berlin which was closed by the Nazis in 1942. Dedicated to Jewish tradition and committed to the principle of academic freedom, the education at Abraham Geiger College embraces three principles:

  • High academic standards with a broad selection of courses, leading to an M.A. in Jewish Theology,
  • Support of the students during their practical training regarding psychological guidance and pastoral concerns,
  • and Guidance of the students in their pastoral practice through rabbinical mentorship.

At Abraham Geiger College, we train men and women alike. We have created a unique path to the rabbinate, transforming the legacy of the Hochschule into a modern conception of Jewish leaning and combining a state accredited MA with the vocational training at our college. Our school’s curriculum is modeled on the successful North American Reform seminary, the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, and our graduatesare accredited by the Central Conference of American Rabbis. Both the rabbinical and the cantorial track provide professionals that will be able to serve as spiritual leaders and educators in synagogues and Jewish communities throughout Europe, but also in South Africa, Israel, and the Unites States. We assume that Judaism in Germany will continue to flourish and that our graduates will stand at its center.

Abraham Geiger College charges no tuition fees as university education is free in Germany. We train in the German language and expect a high command of Hebrew. In the future our MA program language shall switch to English. This will make it even less difficult to opt for training in Germany.

“In turning to a new generation of young Jews from Eastern Europe and Russia, it is also committed to shaping a community of students who connect east and west in a new European Jewish reality. And it is also committed to training scholars who are both caring and humane individuals and who can lead a lost generation of Jews back to the beauty of their heritage and faith.” Rabbi David B. Ruderman, MAHL, PhD, DHL

Mission and Values

Abraham Geiger was convinced that the modern rabbinate was always to be informed by a commitment to modern scholarship. The Abraham Geiger College today stands proudly and ably within the tradition that he established. It promotes excellence in Jewish learning and leadership within a pluralistic environment.

Openness and Plurality

As early as 1898, Leo Baeck exhorted to his rabbinic colleagues that candidates for the rabbinate should be exposed to a variety of Jewish traditions of learning and to the whole extent of academic knowledge as a way to support pluralism and tolerance.

Recognition

The Abraham Geiger College is a part of university of the state of Brandenburg which ensures its academic excellence. It is funded publicly by the Federal Republic of Germany, the State of Brandenburg, the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Federal Republic of Germany and the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

College Leadership

Please find here further information about our boards, faculty and administration.

Abraham Geiger

Rabbi Abraham Geiger (1810–1874) provided the intellectual basis for a reformation of Judaism after the Enlightenment. The eminent scholar paved the way for Liberal Judaism in the 19th century and was the founding father of the unified congregation in Germany.