Early Morning ‘Cougar Kollel’ Launched at Frisch

September 30, 2017

Yeshivat Frisch students have been taking advantage of extra learning opportunities outside the classroom, both before the school day begins and well after the last bell, fulfilling the pasuk “vehagita bo yomam valaila.”

Due to popular student demand, Frisch has relaunched its “cougar kollel” morning learning program, organized and taught by Rabbi Andrew Israeli and Rabbi Burry Klein. The learning, which is open to all students, begins at 7:10 AM on Mondays and Thursdays and continues for the 35 minutes before Shacharit at 7:45. So far, approximately 30 students have been attending each morning session, which focuses on Gemara and Chumash.

“The initiative began with a group of Frisch seniors wanting to learn extra time outside the classroom,” said Israeli, who described the motivational atmosphere created by rising with the sun and sitting with a sefer before the rush of day, surrounded by the stunning stained glass windows of the Frisch beit midrash. “This is just one way we are trying to provide students with learning opportunities outside the schedule of the day. The students show up on a volunteer basis, with the goal of simply learning lishmah.” Cougar kollel was inaugurated this month by Rabbi Moshe Benovitz, director of NCSY Kollel and international managing director of NCSY.

In addition to cougar kollel, Frisch holds mishmar every Thursday evening, after the school day ends. At mishmar, students get to choose from a selection of Torah classes, delivered by Frisch faculty members from a variety of departments. Hundreds of students typically attend. Every few weeks there is additional, special programming after mishmar—for example, learning with college students, a kumzitz or other spiritually-enriching activities.