Patricia Karlin-Neumann

Patricia Karlin-Neumann (‘76)
Palo Alto, CA
Profession: Rabbi, Senior Associate Dean for Religious Life, Stanford University
Johnston Emphasis: Nonviolent Social Change

"Johnston, with its strong individualism and strong practice of community, gave me courage. The faculty and my classmates believed in me so I went off to rabbinic school where virtually no American women had gone before. My teachers and friends thought I could do this, and I try to instill that same confidence in my students now. In this, I imitated Johnston, a path-breaking institution. It's also helped me develop, even invent, jobs that didn't exist before I arrived."

"I left Johnston with the question, how can a place so unabashedly dedicated to the individual learner do so well in cultivating people who care about others? And the answer I came to comes partly from a sense of partnership -- class contract, grad contract, even choosing who should give you your diploma at graduation -- all of which linked us to something larger than ourselves.”

When asked if she has a quote that might best describe her Johnston education, Patricia replied, “I'll respond with two Jewish teachings that have helped to organize my life: ‘Make for yourself a teacher, acquire for yourself a friend’ and ‘Love human beings and bring them close to learning.’”

Quiet the Mind
meditation room

The University’s Meditation Room opened in 2007 and is one of the first “contemplative classroom” spaces in the country.

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