The Jewish Service Corps

Frequently Asked Questions

Application Process Overview

  There are a number of steps to the process – we like to think of it as an opportunity for you to get to know Avodah while we’re getting to know you. Read on for a general walkthrough of the application process, or click one of the subcategories on the menu on the left to dive a little deeper into the interview, reference, or matching parts of the process.

Applications are now open for the ‘24-’25 program year. The initial deadlines have passed and we are now accepting applications on a rolling basis so long as spots remain available. Apply ASAP for your best chance of joining our community! 

1. Apply online

Start by filling out your personal information on page one of the application and make sure to save your progress.

You’ll be asked to share: your preferences for placement cities (if you have them), how you heard about us, your educational background, your religious background, your skills and interests, and a few other details about you.

Complete several short essays about your relationship to social justice, Jewish community, and communal living.

Upload resume.

Send your two references the reference form link you receive via email.

2. Interviews

After each deadline, we will contact qualified applicants to begin the interview process. Interviews for priority deadline applicants will begin by mid-February. Applicants who submit their application after the deadline will then be interviewed in waves – you can reach out to Emily at apply@avodah.net for an updated timeline if needed.

There are two rounds of Avodah interviews included in the process. First, qualified candidates will interview with an Avodah alum. If the alum and Avodah assess the candidate as a good match, the candidate moves on to an interview with an Avodah staff member. This interview will include one of our Program Directors, and a potential another member of the wider Avodah team.

Sometimes, we will place candidates on our Alternate List before or after each round of interviews. This means the candidate will not be considered during that round, but may be considered in the future as capacity allows. We update our alternates regularly and they can choose to exit the process at any time. In past  years, many alternates have gone on for further interviews with Avodah and have become Corps Members.

• Interviews are conducted by phone or video.

3. Learn your status

After your staff interview, you will be notified of your status. Possible statuses include:

Invited into a matching round with potential placement organizations.

Placed on the Alternate List.

Not accepted to the program.

4. Match with your placement organization

If you are invited to participate in the matching round, the process will proceed as follows:

You will receive descriptions of all available positions across all of our program cities.

You will rank your top three choices and we will send your application materials and references to those placements.

You will interview with any of the placement organizations you ranked who are also interested in you as a candidate. You must be available by telephone or video to speak with potential placements throughout the matching process.

After the interviews take place, our placement organizations will rank their top choices of candidates, and we will ask you to re-rank your choices as well.

Avodah will hopefully offer you a match with a placement organization based on the rankings submitted by both you and the placement. If we are unable to make a match for you, you will usually have the opportunity to rank/interview again in the next matching round. Please note that not all candidates who enter the matching round are guaranteed to make a match.

See the Matching Process FAQ section for a more detailed overview.

5. Congratulations, you’ve been accepted!

You will finalize your match by signing a three-way contract between yourself, Avodah, and your placement. This contract lists expectations and commitments, and by signing, you commit to participating in the full one-year program.

Once all three parties have signed the contract, you’re officially accepted into our Jewish Service Corps!

Please note: Once you have signed an Avodah contract, you are committed to the program for the year and will be required to pay a cancellation fee if you decide not to do the program.

Can I defer acceptance?

While you can’t defer acceptance to a placement, if you choose to reapply, we can sometimes expedite the process for you. Please reach out to our Recruitment Director, Emily, at apply@avodah.net to discuss this. We strongly encourage applicants not to enter the matching round unless they are prepared to accept an offer.

What happens if I'm on the Alternate list?

The chances that you will be invited into a subsequent matching round change from round to round, depending on how many matches have already been made. We will be in contact with you periodically to update you on your status. Every year, candidates do make it off our alternate list and end up matching as Corps Members.

How many spots are available in each city?

In the ‘24-25 program year, we are planning on 11-13 Corps Members in Chicago, 9-12 Corps Members in New Orleans, 15 Corps Members in New York City, and 13 Corps Members in Washington, DC. If you are only interested in a particular city, we strongly recommend applying early.

Still have questions?

Our Recruitment team is here to help you through the application process and will be available every step of the way, from start to finish. We know that everyone’s background and needs are different, and they’re here to answer any questions you may have.