You Should Know … Oriana Kelemer

Oriana Kelemer
Oriana Kelemer (Courtesy of Kelemer)

Oriana Kelemer began her education at Yeshivat Rambam, a modern Orthodox Jewish day school that used to be located on Park Heights Avenue. When the school closed in 2011, she made the decision to attend Bais Yaakov of Baltimore.

Kelemer started at Bais Yaakov in seventh grade. Now at 25, she is still involved with the school. She teaches science to high schoolers there part time. In addition, she is involved in Bikur Cholim of Baltimore, as well as a few programs that provide learning opportunities for girls.

After Kelemer graduated high school, she studied for a year in Israel. When she returned to the Baltimore area, she attended Maalot Baltimore, now called the Women’s Institute of Torah Seminary & College, where she got a bachelor’s with a focus in business. She then went on to obtain an MBA in health care management.

Driven by an interest in working more directly with patients, she is planning on starting a physician’s assistant program at George Washington University this summer.

Kelemer lives in the Greenspring area with her family.

Why did you decide to go to Bais Yaakov?

A lot of my friends went to Bais Yaakov. I was really drawn to the community sense of being in an all-girls school and all the different activities and things that they have there. I appreciated their values and really wanted to be a Bais Yaakov girl. After a lot of discussion, [I decided] that was in fact a good choice for me, and I loved it. It really gave me a lot of values that I have now, and it has really influenced a lot of my choices that I have made.

Why did you initially decide to study business, and what interested you in the health care field?

I grew up in a tight-knit community that had a strong focus on systems. We had systems for everything, whether it is Hatzalah, which is … an organization that caters to people in the community in need of EMT services; or if it is a network to support people who are in the hospital like Bikur Cholim; or a network or a system to support girls. There are so many networks and systems within the community that really influenced me and made me want to be involved in systems and give back to the community. It really pushed me toward business, like how can I give back to making systems more efficient? I really enjoy science, and that also brought me toward health care. So now I’m combining those two, the system approach and more working directly with patients.

What motivates you to teach at Bais Yaakov?

Aside from really enjoying science, I value giving back to the community and providing education for girls. With everything I’ve always been doing, working and interning and being in school, … I always want to be constantly giving back to the community and involved with my community.

Why are you passionate about girls’ education?

Nowadays, girls have such a great opportunity to really utilize education and bring back to the community and do something great. Girls don’t always have an awareness of all the amazing opportunities that are available to them and what they can do with those opportunities, still within the realm of how they want to contribute. … There are so many opportunities that are available to them, and I’m really passionate about [helping] those girls know what those opportunities are that exist for them.

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