Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

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Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby clairef » Tue Sep 26, 2017 9:48 am

As an orthodox Jew who is applying for the clinical doctorate this year, I would like to know whether any trainees who are practicing Jews would be willing to share their experience of having to request time off for Jewish holidays, Friday afternoons, etc? How do you handle lectures on Fridays? How forthcoming has the university been in accepting that you might have to miss lectures? On placement, have you managed to rearrange your working pattern to allow for early departure on Fridays? Obviously I understand that there are policies in place to prevent discrimination, ('equality and diversity') but I can imagine that even if a university allowed you to miss lectures each Friday for weeks (or even months!) on end, and catch up on them independently, that this wouldn't put you at a disadvantage compared to all the other trainees. Has anyone ever had the audacity ( :roll: !) to request with advance notice that lectures are NOT held on fridays?
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby lakeland » Tue Sep 26, 2017 4:26 pm

An interesting question! I don’t know about every course, but the ones I do don’t routinely have regular teaching on a Friday. Often Fridays are study or placement days, but there’s an expectation that you’re available on a Friday to attend Uni if needed.

I have no idea about the religious grounds but assume it would be the same policy as per other NHS organisations as that’s who you’re employed by.
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby lingua_franca » Tue Sep 26, 2017 6:24 pm

I can see you'd have to take a couple of hours off on Fridays in the winter months, but the rest of the year candle-lighting is quite late. This erev Yom Kippur it will be 18:24 in London, and while I could be wrong (I'm not a trainee), I shouldn't think that people would still be in lectures at that time. I know you will need some time to prepare for Shabbat and chagim, but with effective organisation you could get most things done earlier in the week. Consider carefully where you apply as well. I wouldn't go somewhere without a supportive community, as juggling such an intensive course with an observant life probably will be tricky.

For certain placements you might be able to work longer on Fridays, if needs must - some mental health services probably do qualify as life-saving? I'm really unsure of the halacha on this, though.

Finally, I've never met an Orthodox psychologist, but I did know an Orthodox psychiatrist, and if he could get through med school then clinical training shouldn't be impossible. Good luck with it. :)
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby Loula » Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:43 am

I have no idea, but some courses do regularly have teaching on Fridays- mine did throughout first and second year during term time
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby clairef » Wed Sep 27, 2017 1:51 pm

Thanks for your replies. I am hopeful that the universities will be supportive - and I'd be surprised if they never had to deal with such a case before. However judging by the responses on this website, it appears that it might be quite rare for people like me to go on training (maybe specifically because it's so hard to juggle!)... I am still hoping that another orthodox Jewish trainee (or qualified) will respond with their experience on this forum!
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby lingua_franca » Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:26 pm

clairef wrote:Thanks for your replies. I am hopeful that the universities will be supportive - and I'd be surprised if they never had to deal with such a case before. However judging by the responses on this website, it appears that it might be quite rare for people like me to go on training (maybe specifically because it's so hard to juggle!)... I am still hoping that another orthodox Jewish trainee (or qualified) will respond with their experience on this forum!


I'm sure there must be orthodox CPs out there, but the orthodox community here isn't that big, especially if you're only including Modern Orthodox (I'm assuming you're not haredi), and so finding members of a relatively small profession in that relatively small pool of people is going to be tricky. You might have better luck asking on Jewish forums or Facebook groups. I'm sorry I couldn't help more, but as you say, I'd hope universities would be supportive.
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby MarkM » Sun Oct 01, 2017 8:56 am

clairef wrote:Thanks for your replies. I am hopeful that the universities will be supportive - and I'd be surprised if they never had to deal with such a case before. However judging by the responses on this website, it appears that it might be quite rare for people like me to go on training (maybe specifically because it's so hard to juggle!)... I am still hoping that another orthodox Jewish trainee (or qualified) will respond with their experience on this forum!


Not a direct answer, sorry, but I know a Jewish trainee, and he was able to leave early (mid-afternoon?) on Fridays in the autumn and winter months. Wish I could help more, but yeah: It is possible.

I agree with lingua_franca about possibly trying avenues other than this forum to find out a bit more. But yeah generally speaking I imagine universities should be supportive!
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby workingmama » Sun Oct 01, 2017 1:25 pm

Hi,

I know two orthodox qualifieds, and have heard that there was another lady in previous years on our same course. Would you like me to approach the ladies I know and ask if they would mind my sharing contact details for you to approach directly?

Very best, WM x
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Re: Missing lectures/placement days for religious reasons

Postby Carrot » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:01 pm

There is someone who is an Orthodox Jew in my training cohort: we don't have university on Fridays so they are able to negotiate to leave placement early on Friday afternoons (and can make this up by staying late another day when needed). I don't know how the university would have handled it if Friday was a university day, but you could certainly find out what days are placement/uni days from all courses you are considering.

This trainee has had time off for religious holidays too- I don't know if there were any difficulties in negotiating the agreement, but certainly it has been respected and they have had time off when needed. In such a situation it may be worth seeking consent for lectures to be recorded, then recordings can be sent to you of any lectures missed so you are not too disadvantaged.
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