Glatz-Landy Ahavat Yisrael Capstone Endowment Fund helps students attend capstone Israel trip


The fund was founded in honor of Dean of Students Roslyn Landy’s grandchildren. Photo by Roslyn Landy

Sasha Karasik, Reporter

Throughout their life, the Landys have been influential members of the CESJDS family. With Dean of Students Roz Landy working inside the JDS building for the past 46 years and the next two generations of the family going to the school, it is safe to say they are active in the community. Now, as a way to give back, the Glatz-Landys have given a generous donation that will help generations of JDS students to come.  

On April 23, 2023, CESJDS announced the establishment of the Glatz-Landy Ahavat Yisrael Capstone Endowment Fund, donated by Dean of Students Roz Landy’s children. The fund was created to provide scholarships to ensure all students can attend the Irene and Daniel Simpkins Senior Capstone Israel Trip. 

Each year, the senior class travels to Israel and visits Poland and the Czech Republic where they spend the second semester living, learning, exploring and celebrating Israeli culture. However, for some students, the trip is too expensive.  

“We talk about it as a capstone for the entire school, and yet it costs this amount of money that makes it really hard for some families to participate,” Director of Enrollment and Tuition Assistance Orna Siegel said. 

The trip, which lasts three months, is $15,500 and is run by Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI). Because the trip is run through a separate school, JDS cannot offer financial assistance as they do for a typical semester. 

Independently, JDS has its own larger endowment fund to provide students with scholarships so that they could attend the trip, but about a year ago, they developed a partnership with the Jewish National Fund of North America (JNF). 

Established in 1901, JNF is a nonprofit organization that strives to give generations of Jews a unique voice in building a prosperous future for the land of Israel and its people.

A few years ago, JNF invited JDS to be part of a program designed to give more kids the opportunity to go to Israel. Now, the partnership includes Milken Community School in Los Angeles, Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy in Philadelphia and JDS. 

“The school’s core value of ‘Ahava Israel’ is one that JNF shares,” Head of School Rabbi Mitchel Malkus said. “They were super excited about partnering more with the school because we already partner with them through Alexander Muss High School in Israel, and we’ve worked really hard to develop that program and to add elements to that program.”

In 2013, JNF merged with AMHSI, and when JDS was approached as a potential partner,  AMHSI shared that the funds they raised could be met with matching funds. For example, if a $100 dollar donation came to the school, JNF would contribute an additional $100 double the initial offering. 

“When the Landys made their gift, they could double the amount of their gift because it would be matched by JNF,” Malkus said. “That was exciting to Tammy and Jon, to leverage their gift and to actually support even further.”

While these doubled-donations aid greatly, JDS is not legally allowed to touch the donation. Instead, they use the interest made on the donation so the initial donation remains in the endowment.

“The way an endowment works is, for example, if you donated $100, we wouldn’t use that $100 to pay for whatever it is that you donated it for,” Malkus said. “What we do is we take the interest and the earnings on that $100 and use just that so that every year there would always be that original $100 that would be in the endowment.”

As they have done before and will continue to do, JDS will reach out to families who receive tuition assistance at the beginning of senior year to make them aware of these scholarship opportunities, and then families can decide if they believe they should be considered. 

With the establishment of this new fund, more JDS students will be able to participate in the Israel trip senior year. 

“I’m extraordinarily proud of my children, Jonathan and Tammy, for their generosity in supporting our meaningful Capstone trip to Israel,” Dean of Students Roz Landy said.