The students expressed their wonder over the complete separation, as the college is headed by Rabbanit Adina Bar-Shalom, the daughter of Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who is considered a relatively feminist person in the ultra-Orthodox sector.
One of the students says secular students and students from the haredi branch of the Ono Academic College eat at the same cafeteria as well.
According to one of the cafeteria workers, the separation demand came from the Haredi College. "As a non-haredi person, I understand this request. The haredim are strict about the separation issue and have asked us to apply it here too."
Is there a salesman for men and a salesman for women?
"No. I sell to both boys and girls, but there is complete separation using a very tall screen, so boys cannot talk to the girls or see them in any situation."
According to one of the haredi students, however, such extreme segregation is not common anywhere. "I don't know any restaurants of stores of any kind which include such separation between women and men. The maximum one could find in the extreme areas of Mea Shearim is a men-only counter."
The Haredi College of Jerusalem issued the following statement in response: "The college is a haredi institution which operates in accordance with the unique nature of its haredi students, based on separation between women and men in the classrooms and public areas.
"This is done as part of the college's perception of a maximum adjustment of the higher education system to the men and women of the haredi society. This matter is at the foundation of the haredi existence and is performed while strengthening the feeling of belonging among the students and mutual respect."