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SJ Teens Focused on Jewish Leadership at BBYO Summer Camps

Read this story in the Jewish Community Voice

As another summer comes to a close, it’s time to reflect on the amazing summer experiences that BBYO has to offer. While each of these summer experiences offers different environments and different programs to learn from, they all focus on Jewish life and how to become a better Jewish leader. This year, South Jersey Region sent 44 teens for many meaningful summer experiences.

Chapter Leadership Training Conference (CLTC) and International Leadership Training Conference (ILTC) are two summer experiences targeted for teens who aspire to be chapter, regional, or international leaders in BBYO and wish to develop themselves as Jewish leaders. However, the leadership skills learned during these programs are applicable for future endeavors beyond BBYO. CLTC has eight different sessions – five held at Beber Camp in Wisconsin and three held at Bethany College in West Virginia. ILTC is only one session at B’nai B’rith Perlman Camp with around 250 participants from across the world.

Kallah is another BBYO program at Perlman Camp. It explores the idea of what it means to you to be Jewish. The staff will share the diversity of Jewish life and help you explore who you are and who you want to become. At Kallah, and Perlman Camp, participants form a community with teens from around the world and learn about Jewish ritual, values and practices as well as the Jewish community and Israel.

BBYO on Campus consists of three different Impact sessions, as well as a new business institute found on college campuses. Impact is a summer program that is centered around participating in community service in the city. There is Impact: Boston at Brandeis University, Impact DC at the University of Maryland, and Impact Chicago at the University of Chicago. All of these sessions are different, but offer the same amount of community service to bring back to the participants’ own regions. There is also the Michigan Business and Entrepreneurship, which is held at the University of Michigan. This was the first year for the Business Program, which focuses on Jewish business leadership and gives the experience of learning through experience. The program concludes with a competition where teens present their original business plans to a panel of judges, and the winners are awarded funding for their business plan.

International Leadership Seminar in Israel (ILSI), Ambassadors to Bulgaria, and BBYO Passport offer meaningful experiences outside of the United States. ILSI is a 21-day trip in Israel where teens not only learn leadership skills, but also participate in meaningful community service in local areas and explore the many fascinating parts of Israel. Participants come home with a new appreciation for the Jewish State and its complicated situation. Ambassadors to Bulgaria gives a unique experience to travel to a beautiful part of Europe to complete 16 hours of community service in the country while learning about the Jewish community and history there. BBYO Passport offers many different trips for teens (and some include the whole family) to travel to different parts of the world. Popular BBYO Passport trips include Eco-Costa Rica, Euro-Continental Discovery, Italy Discovery, Western Europe Discovery, Israel Journey and more.

South Jersey Region sent delegates to all types of BBYO summer experiences this year, and each teen came back with a meaningful experience ready to share with their chapter and the region. Concluding the summer was South Jersey’s Beach Bash Kickoff, held on August 25 down the shore in Margate. South Jersey is ready to tackle on its 54th year and make it the best one yet. Charlotte is BBYO’s regional mazkirah and Sam is regional mazkir.

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