Why I am Interning at UJA Federation of New York #1

During the fall semester of last school year, I got the opportunity to attend something called the General Assembly (GA) in Washington, D.C. with 21 other Michigan students. The GA is a yearly gathering of Jewish professionals from the US and from across the world. I participated in inspiring workshops, heard from amazing speakers, and networked a ton. Although my Dad is a Rabbi and my Mom is a Jewish educator, this was my first opportunity to really explore what working in the Jewish community is like.

The GA was run by a group of non-profits called the Jewish Federations of North America. A Federation has donors who donate money (pretty obvious) and then committees within the Federation decide how to allocate that money after each fundraising cycle which lasts about a year. So when you donate to a Federation, your money goes towards one of their three pillars: caring for people in need, responding to crises at home or far away, or shaping a Jewish future. I had heard so much about Jewish non-profits throughout my lifetime, but never knew (and was curious to explore) what it really meant to work for one.

After my experience at the GA, I was energized and excited to have some sort of idea of what I want to do with my life. I changed my major from the School of Information to Organizational Studies and applied for a 10-week program in New York City that would allow me to intern at the Federation of New York. Thinking about where I am now versus where I was at the beginning of sophomore year, I feel confident that I am moving in the right direction towards finding what I want to do for the rest of my life.


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