Thank you for your interest in the Senator Ben Cardin Jewish Scholars Program. This is an elite program, open to Jewish day school teens, designed to create the next generation of Jewish leaders through individual training and exposure to current world influencers. Qualifying applicants will participate in a series of one-on-one text-based study sessions with a community mentor, drawing on classic Jewish sources as well as contemporary reflections from the society that surrounds us. This will be followed by a short speech on a related topic, from trailblazers who have accomplished incredible things in a variety of fields. These are individuals at the top of their industries and are carefully chosen to illustrate the wide-ranging effects one can have on the community while maintaining a proud Jewish identity. Participants will gain insight into the multi-faceted approach classical Judaism has to key issues, and discover how even in 21st century America, Judaism remains ever-relevant, both inside the study hall and in the world beyond. Teens will also get the chance to practice and work on the lobbying skills necessary to present before a congressman or senator!
These sessions will culminate in a unique lobbying mission to Washington, DC, where you will be taken in small groups to meet with sitting senators and representatives and lobby on behalf of legislation relevant to a variety of Jewish interests. Participants will be trained in lobbying techniques, and paired with professional lobbyists who will assist you during your time in the Capitol. This will give you an eye into the political process, and a voice with which to personally express your support of various legislation to the congressmen who will actually be voting on them, as well as a deeper look into the political relations of American Jews who are passionate about making a difference.
Sessions run from 7:30 pm to 9 pm with dinner served from 7pm at each session. Every three sessions, teens will have to present to their group on the issues learned with the group. Participants are expected to commit to participating in all aspects of the program including the lobbying mission to Washington, DC. Please see below for all program dates. Those who attend 9 of 10 sessions as well as the lobbying mission will receive a $100 stipend at the closing ceremony, as well as a certificate of training in lobbying techniques. Alternatively, participants will have the option to spend a summer in Israel on unforgettable NCSY summer leadership trips, such as NEXT STEP, and Startup Fellowship, Michlelet, Give, Kollel, BILT, for the highly subsidized price*. (See here for more details about these incredible trips.) Please indicate if you are interested in this extraordinarily exciting opportunities as the number of spots available at this price is very limited.
Application deadline: Tuesday, January 17
* Subject to eligibility, terms and conditions apply. Not including application fee.
- Wednesday nights
- Start date: January 25, 2017
- End date: March 22, 2017
- Lobbying mission: TBA
- Closing Ceremony: March 29, 2017
- Location: JCC of Greater Washington
To fill out the Cardin Day School application, please click here