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Posted August 8, 2017
The Wexner Foundation recently piloted the Wexner Field Fellows Program in partnership with the Jim Joseph Foundation to provide opportunities for professional growth to promising Jewish professionals who plan to continue to pursue a career as a professional leader in the North American Jewish community. The Wexner Field Fellowship has now expanded into its own initiative to provide professional development and leadership learning for up to 15 emerging leaders each year.
The Wexner Field Fellowship is a special opportunity for Jewish professional leaders to grow, deepen their leadership skills and develop a rich network of colleagues to support their career. Through this three-year intensive professional development program Field Fellows will:
- Become part of a cohort of lifelong professional learners
- Learn with amazing leadership teachers and Jewish educators
- Receive one-on-one professional coaching and Jewish learning, along with access to reimbursable funds toward Foundation-approved personally customized professional development opportunities
- Become part of The Wexner Foundation’s network of professional and volunteer leaders in the North American Jewish Community and in Israel
- Develop a nuanced appreciation for the diversity of the North American Jewish community
A Commitment to Jewish Professional Leadership and Learning
Wexner Field Fellows are emerging leaders committed to a career in the North American Jewish Community. In light of this, Fellows are required to work full-time at a Jewish communal organization based in North America for the duration of their fellowship (three years) and for at least three years beyond (for six years total). Wexner Field Fellows are expected to participate in all required elements of the program, including attending all institutes. The Wexner Foundation covers all expenses for program participation. For more details, visit the Eligibility, Awards and Expectations page.
If you are in your first year of full-time graduate school or applying to study full-time in the upcoming summer or fall, you may be eligible for the Wexner Graduate Fellowship/Davidson Scholars Program.
A Network of Support
- Field Fellows participate in six cohort-based institutes on leadership skills and Jewish issues over three years.
- Field Fellows will be paired with professional coaches and Jewish educators to meet with regularly.
- Field Fellows will have regular mentoring meetings with professionals from The Wexner Foundation to support their growth and progress.
- Field Fellows will connect with their fellowship cohort remotely between institutes with the director of the program to network, share concerns and for peer-consultations.
- Field Fellows will be connected (when appropriate) for mentoring relationships with members of The Wexner Foundation’s alumni community.
In order be eligible to apply for the Wexner Field Fellowship, all eligibility requirements must be met. Applicants must:
- Be based in North America working full time for a Jewish communal organization
- Be between the ages of 28 and 43 years old by the start of the Fellowship (March 1, 2018)
- Have at least five years of post-baccalaureate full-time work or volunteer experience and have at least one year full-time work at their current organization by September 1, 2017
- Be a citizen of the United States, Canada or Mexico, or have documentation that allows them to work in that country
- Receive the written support of the executive director and board president of their current organization for full participation in the Fellowship Program (a letter of support will be provided for those invited to complete the full application, and if the applicant is the executive director, s/he should still get the board president's signature)
- Not have received the Wexner Graduate Fellowship; Note: Wexner Field Fellowship applicants who have completed graduate studies specifically geared for the Jewish professional field are now eligible as long as they have not received a Wexner Graduate Fellowship. The Wexner Foundation also remains committed to providing leadership training to those who have not had graduate-level training in Jewish communal work and will ensure that they are represented in each cohort.
All eligible applicants are encouraged to apply, irrespective of denominational affiliation, gender, racial or ethnic origin, disability or sexual orientation.
If you have applied to any of The Wexner Foundation’s programs in the past, you are required to submit an entirely new application.
The pre-application is now open. Visit the Apply page to fill it out.
Field Fellows Awards and Expectations
- Commit to participate in all Fellowship-sponsored programs for a total of approximately 6 business days per year for three years and ensure that there will be no conflicts with professional responsibilities. Field Fellows will attend two institutes annually (a Spring Institute around March and a Fall Institute around September). They will also participate in the JFNA General Assembly during the second year of their Fellowship, and a 24-hour capstone experience during the last year of the Fellowship.
- Commit to work full-time in the North American Jewish Community for all three years of the Fellowship Program and three years beyond (six years total).
- Commit to selecting a professional coach and a Jewish educator from a roster of approved professional coaches and faculty to work with one-on-one on an ongoing basis. The coach will partner with Field Fellows to help them reach their potential. The Jewish educator will work with Field Fellows to help expand their Jewish understanding based on their unique needs.
- Benefit from access to a pool of funds for additional learning and growth. These funds can be used on Foundation-approved professional development opportunities and associated travel and accommodations. Field Fellows will be reimbursed for these expenses.
- Must submit a W-9 to The Wexner Foundation after they have been accepted. The Wexner Foundation cannot give tax advice. Some professional development opportunities which are reimbursed may incur taxes.
For questions regarding the Field Fellowship, please contact Dara Katzner, Administrative Associate, at [email protected]. Please review the eligibility requirements before contacting us, and note that there are no exceptions to the eligibility requirements listed above. A new cohort will be selected each year, so you may be eligible to apply in the future if you are not currently eligible. To be notified when the pre-application opens in 2018, click here.
Field Fellow applicants must be available for an in-person interview the week of December 10, 2017 in New York City.
The 2018 Institutes are scheduled for:
- Spring Institute, March 4-7, 2018.
- Fall Institute, October 7-10, 2018
Future institutes will be around the same time the following years. If accepted, Field Fellows are obligated to attend all institutes. The incoming class of Field Fellows will attend institutes in 2018, 2019, and 2020.
Photo credit: Wexner Field Fellowship