The Italian Fascist government of the island of Rhodes established a rabbinical seminary in 1928. The aim was not only to train rabbis, giving them a modern education, but also to create vectors of Italian influence in the Sephardi communities where the rabbis would assume duties once they graduated. The establishment of this institution was a response to the acute crisis in the education and formation of modern rabbis, especially chief rabbis, among the Sephardim of the Levant. The new seminary relied on the financial support of the Italian government and on subsidies from Jewish communities. The seminary closed because of financial difficulties in 1938, at the same time that antisemitic legislation was introduced in Italy.