Diana Levy Moldovan has been involved with Avodah in multiple capacities, with involvement spanning more than a decade. In 2007, she became the first Service Corps Member to be placed at the Urban Assembly School for Law and Justice (SLJ) — and she’s worked there ever since.
“My Avodah experience was awesome. I had just graduated college and I knew I wanted to be in education — I just needed to figure out how to do that in a sustainable way,” says Diana. “Being matched with SLJ was really amazing for me personally and professionally. It allowed me to get my master’s and stay in education long-term. I’m now going into my 15th year as an educator in New York City.”
The skills Diana gained during her service year prepared her to be a leader within her community and to be able to manage Service Corps Members of her own.
“They have great, fresh ideas and are driven to do well. I’ve had a lot of Corps Members over the years and most of the time they stay with us if we have a position available. Many have stayed with us two or three years after Avodah.”
Diana said that the quality and caliber of Avodah’s Corps Members sets them apart from other young professionals entering the field and leads to a significant impact on SLJ’s students.
“The mission alignment with Avodah is super important and helpful. Everyone we ever interview, they want to learn and to serve others. They want to share their passions. All of that is super important. It’s also helpful that Avodah vets people — we know that they go through a process to be selected for this program. Because they are opting into this program, I know they’re seeing it as more than just a job — this a career, a calling.”
In their roles, Corps Members spend time getting to know students and helping them find programs that fit their interests. The goal is to find high quality opportunities for the youth at the lowest possible cost. This not only supports the students in their daily lives, but also prepares them for the college application process.
Diana recalls one Corps Member who had a lasting impact, even after their time with SLJ. She had gone on to earn a master’s degree and work for another, similar organization. She served as an advisor to a former SLJ student. “The student reached out to me and said, ‘This person is now my advisor and she has single-handedly gotten me through this year of college.’ That’s the impact. She learned the trade while in Avodah, and it was a huge stepping stone. She then went on and made a transformative impact for someone else.”
Diana personally attests, “Avodah absolutely helps young professionals get a foot in the door for long-term careers. Many Corps Members stay in the field they served in, whether they choose to stay with their placement organization or move on to somewhere else. It’s also a great stepping stone for pursuing graduate programs and advanced degrees. It’s either a turning point that shows them what path they want to take or sets them up really well for their next step.”
There are limited spots remaining for the 2021-2022 Service Corps year in our program cities. Interested applicants can apply at avodah.net/serve.