As first seen on Menachem Mendel’s blog, a new Semikha program is starting in Toronto come the fall. The claim themselves to be a center Orthodox yeshiva. The faculty is a mix of UTJ, YCT and YU, with a few Israeli rabbis. It looks quite intriguing, especially considering that the head of the institution is Rabbi Dr. Daniel Sperber.
From a sociological perspective, I think the opening of an institution of this caliber in Toronto is very telling about Judaism in Canada as opposed to the US. I recall someone sharing with me years ago that in Canada it is basically Orthodox or Liberal. Conservative Judaism like we have in the US is almost non-existent. In a sense, there is more room in Canada for this endeavor, especially considering the early returns on YCT in the mainstream Orthodox community.
Most will just dismiss this institute as Conservative and be done with it. However, before condemning this institution, it might be worthwhile to get a full picture of the people and not just judge by which institute each was aligned with in earlier years.