Frequently Asked Questions About
the Avodah Justice Fellowship

What does the program look like?

  • Our program is designed to fit the needs of working professionals. The Fellowship includes:
  • •Two to three evening and one Sunday session a month that center on growing a systemic analysis and tools for combating social and economic injustice, on Jewish life, and on the intersections between Judaism and social and economic justice. Sessions will also cover and incorporate community building, personal growth, and reflection.
  • •Two or three weekend retreats designed to provide space for community-building and deep learning. We start with an introductory community-building retreat to develop a common language and a shared purpose and close with a year-end reflection retreat to help you focus on your next steps as social change leaders in the Avodah network.
  • •Mentorship provided via peer mentor groups, one-on-one coaching with your Fellowship Director, and optional meetings with an Avodah Community Mentor. Coaching and peer-mentoring will help you to address challenges occurring in your work, think about and tackle areas of personal growth, build on your strengths and explore your long-term professional and person path.
  • •A personal project in which you will take on a Jewish leadership role around issues of justice. Projects can emerge out of work you are already doing professionally or personally or can be new initiatives you take on with the support of the Avodah staff.
  • •An active and engaged community that will welcome you for life! You’ll be invited to be a part of educational, social, cultural, and religious events and celebrations with members of our Jewish Service Corps (in New York and Chicago) and our network of almost one thousand Avodah alumni.

Just to be clear, do I have to move into a house and all that?

You’re thinking of our Service Corps, where we place program participants at non-profit placements and they live communally for a year. The Justice Fellowship is different – it’s about supporting you in your current work. No need to leave your job or pack up your bags!

How long is the Fellowship?

The Fellowship will run January 2022 – June 2022 in Chicago and Kansas City. If you’re interested in applying for our next cycle, you can request an application now. 

What does the application look like?

Our application consists of three steps:

Step one: Fill out your basic information in the Application Request Form.

Step two: When our recruitment cycle reopens, we’ll email you a full application to complete. At this time, you’ll be asked to send a reference form to two references, and to review our Covid-19 protocols and confirm you are vaccinated. 

Round three: Join a group interview with your city-specific Fellowship Director and other applicants.

Who should apply to be a Fellow?

    • You have 2-8 years of experience in either your professional or personal life working on domestic social and economic justice issues.
    • You have an interest in exploring the intersection of Jewish life and social justice.
    • You have a commitment to personal growth and an active interest in building community and developing the power of a network during and after the Fellowship.

How much does the Fellowship cost? Should I apply if my organization can’t cover the cost?

Thanks to the generosity of several funders, the tuition needed for Fellows to participate in the program is highly subsidized. As an economic justice organization, we are also committed to offering a sliding scale model, with a scale that is based either on the Fellow’s organization’s budget or on the Fellow’s own salary/income (depending on whether the Fellow or the Fellow’s employer is paying). Since the Avodah Justice Fellowship is both a professional and personal development program, we encourage organizations to cover all or at least part of the tuition. We can provide additional documentation to help secure professional development time or funding from one’s organization if needed. We will do our best to ensure that no accepted candidates are prevented from attending due to financial reasons. Learn more here.

Can you say more about how you define domestic social and economic justice work? I don’t work at a nonprofit or social service agency but I’m interested in this program.

We define social and economic justice work as addressing a wide range of pressing local and national issues. This includes: professionals providing services to low-income individuals or groups of people, helping organize communities to fight for systemic change, serving at government offices helping constituents in need, serving as a teacher or librarian in low-income or marginalized community, serving in health clinics; working on food justice; or helping people make their workplace better. If this doesn’t sound like your day job, but you are personally involved in justice issues (through activism, organizing, art, serving as a lay leader, etc.) your work can also be defined as justice work! Take a look at previous Fellows  to get a sense of the diverse profiles of our participants.

Are Jewish Service Corps alumni eligible to be participants?

Service Corps alumni are not eligible to be Fellows, but the Fellows will be a part of the larger Avodah network. Both Fellowship and Service Corps alumni will be able to enjoy mentorship, professional development and networking opportunities through Avodah. One significant way that Service Corps alumni can shape the Fellowship is to help with recruitment! Please spread the word in your networks and to colleagues, friends, and work contacts you think would make great members of the Fellowship.

How will Covid-19 affect the Justice Fellowship?

The Justice Fellowship will be in-person for the 2022 program year as local ordinances allow. We are currently finalizing our risk-mitigation protocols in consultation with our medical advisors. All Fellows must have received two dosages of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, or one dosage of the Johnson and Johnson Vaccine, as well as any boosters that they are eligible for at least two weeks before the start of the Fellowship. We will be updating this page soon with more information about our protocols – please stay tuned or reach out to our Recruitment Director at [email protected] if you’d like to discuss!

Will the Justice Fellowship be returning to New York?

Yes! The Justice Fellowship will definitely resume in New York, it’s just a question of when – stay tuned for it’s return in 2022/2023. You can still sign up to be notified when it launches here.

Take your next step as an Avodah Justice Fellow today.

Apply Now »