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Dispatch from Israel

By Daniel DeVries on January 7, 2013
Colgate University extended study to Israel

Israel extended study participants are seen on a day trip to Beit Guvrin.

Colgate students taking The Land of Israel extended study course visited historic Beit Guvrin, January 3. Students participated in an archaeological dig, toured the site, and took part in a study session about the Bar Kochba revolt. The group is led by Steven Kepnes, Murray W. and Mildred K. Finard professor in Jewish studies and religion.

Colgate University extended study to Israel


Colgate University extended study to Israel

Extended study students in Israel sift through dirt excavated from an archaeological site.

Kepnes said, “We excavated a cave that was believed to be abandoned by the Idumeans in the 2nd Century BCE when Jews took over the area. After digging for about an hour, Colgate students sifted the dirt to reveal 2,000 year old pieces of clay pots, shells, and ancient compacted sand and shell building materials. A particularly rare find was unearthed by A.J. Farkas ’13, Emmett Potts ’15, and Jessica Gaines ’13, who found a 2,000 year-old piece of golden glass with a decorative ridge.”

Colgate University extended study to Israel

Extended study participants in Israel.

The Land of Israel is one of two extended study courses now in progress. The second, Living Egypt, explores modern Egyptian society through interaction with Egyptian students while speaking Arabic. The Egypt extended study group is led by Noor Khan, associate professor of history.


  • Timmera Whaley said:

    Israel is like home to me because of this trip.

  • Alyssa said:

    I’m so glad that this extended study is still going strong!! I went to Israel with Prof. Kepnes and Hiam in the summer of 2009 and it was one of the best experiences of my Colgate career. I hope you all had another wonder trip exploring Israel 🙂