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Chapter Leadership Training Conference (CLTC) Blog – Bethany College

The Rise of Jacob Remels AZA

Posted on 07/20/2016 @ 09:00 PM

It is day 8 of CLTC 6 and day 4 of the existence of our chapter, Jacob Remels AZA. All members are effectively doing their assignments in order to have an amazing program and presentation at “CLTC presents.”

Last Friday, we had elections and chose our Godol, Andy Kotz. So far we have seen outstanding leadership as he makes sure all board members and committee members are attentive while they accomplish their work.  He is also heading the banner committee. The banner includes a combination of Remels AZA colors and the Israeli flag.  Other committees in our chapter include song committee, shirt committee, Shabbat committee, and the programming committee.

Last Saturday we planned a Havdallah service to remember. It included tea light candles that spelled out “CLTC”, and spotlighted many members of our chapter talking about who they were before BBYO and who they have become as Alephs. We concluded the service with singing B’ttzelem Elohim and Sweet Mother.

Minutes later, the cheer circles began. “ALLO MAYA ALLO MAYA,” shouted thirty Alephs as we shared how proud we are to be in BBYO. Then we heard, “ identity. Identity. Who am I a BBG,” as the BBGs proclaimed their love for BBYO and BBG.

Two days later Monday evening arrived and we participated in the March of the Living program. We learned about the concentration camps of the Holocaust and the various efforts that the Nazis used to exterminate the Jews. Shortly after we were shown a video that helped show us how important Israel is to the Jewish people. The video showed that teens went on an emotional roller coaster as the trip transitioned from Poland to Israel. The program inspired many of us to attend MOTL in the future.

Yesterday, we had a Maccabiah color war. The four teams represented countries that BBYO partners with. There was White Israel, Blue Argentina, Green Bulgaria and Red UK & Ireland. Activities for the day included group relays, team spirit, team songs/skits and cheers, and finally electives that included sports and activities like Family Feud. In the end, Margaux and Stephen led team Israel to victory.

Finally, the night ended with an International Convention launch party. Over 2500 teen leaders from all across the world attended International Convention this past year. Dallas, TX is hosting IC this year and numbers are expected to increase.

CLTC is fantastic and to all parents reading this I hope you will share our experiences and stories with your friends and their kids as well as your own children

Fraternally submitted with undying love for Jacob Remels AZA #6 and CLTC 6 2016.


Day 8 of CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/20/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Today was another day filled with laughs and great memories. We started the day off with a meaningful Shacharit (morning service) centered on our different traditions and bringing them together as one community. Every day I have been enjoying CLTC even more. The chapters worked diligently on their programs for today as three of them were presenting them to the group today. We learned about the dangers of gossip, sang songs with Julia and Brian, and learned about Jethro. Today's value was inter-faith relations and the teens were stunned to find that so many religious texts were so similar to the Torah. We all celebrated national lollipop day by trading lollipops and funny stories. Here is a quote from one of our friends at CLTC 6!

"CLTC is an experience of a life time and I'll make friends that last forever"- Eric Weiss


Day 7 of CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/18/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Hello it’s Margaux and Amanda here again reporting to you from week two of CLTC 6! Today, as chapter of the day again, we took on the challenge of creating an engaging and meaningful atmosphere throughout the day. To start of the day, we raised the American and Israeli flags, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance and singing Hatikvah. Our value of the day was "Lifneu Iver Lo Titen Michshol", which translates in English to “do not place a stumbling block in front of a blind man”. We interpreted this as helping others, so as our action of the day, we asked the participants to do good deeds for others during the course of the day. At flag lowering, we asked what they did, how it made them feel, and if someone helped them.

For the main portion of the day, we rotated between three electives: Parliamentary Procedure, Jewish Leadership, and Asking for Help. After these rotations, we moved into electives, which all related to various forms of communication. Margaux learned about interpersonal communication and how to properly use social media in your chapter, and Amanda learned about public speaking and facilitation. In interpersonal communication, we learned how to communicate with others in a kind but direct way while still getting our message across. We practiced using I statements in specific scenarios. Our social media session was all about the different ways to use social media in your chapter in order to communicate information, engage current members, and gain new members. Public speaking taught us how to appeal to your audience and gave us skills that can help you when speaking to a large audience. Lastly, the facilitation session taught us how to run a program or meeting for a large group of people and gain attention through respect from the group.

To end this jam packed day, we finished with an emotional program about March of the Living. This program is a two week program starting in Poland and ending in Israel. In Poland teens tour many historical Holocaust sites and finish by exploring through Israel. If you would like to learn more about this amazing program, check the BBYO website for additional information.

Well, that’s all for today, thank you again for checking in and don’t forget “Fish are friends, not food! CHOMP”.


Teen Poems at CLTC 6

Posted on 07/16/2016 @ 10:00 PM

Today we had our first chapter program. As part of the program, the participants were asked to write in their journals about where they come from and about their past. Here are two beautiful poems written by two of our amazing teens!

I am from guitars, from Fenders and Martins. I am from the farmland vastly expanding. (Dry, brown, mostly deserted) From long nights dancing in the fields. I am from the grapefruit, trees, and grape vines. I am from Pesachs and laughter, from Kasanoff And Hirst and Brody and Etter I am from the arguing and leaving. From have faith in all, yet live to thrive on your own. I am from the dimly lit Shabbos candles, burning slowly to the bottom. I am from Texas and sweet tea and pecan pie. From siblings stick together because people always leave. I am from fake smiled family, pictures and empty tears and coffee spilled on the floor. These moments encourage and inspire. I am my own person, searching for my way.

~Neely Kasanoff

I am from videogames, from UTZ pretzels, and sodium-chloride. I am from the hill on top of Laurel Acres, at sunset and sunrise. I am the thriving sunflowers that constantly rise and rise every year as if G-d’s hand pulls them up. I am from short pass-overs then Afikomen hunt, hazel eyes, and hammy-downs of my father’s, preceded by his. I am from a hyper-active child looking for a long-lost soulmate come a 12 house neighborhood. Soft pretzels, brownies, and pie, all catch one’s eye as they approach my South Jersey. From the Kidney Stones of my dad’s to the stepping stones of a new house, I sift into a tensive state of mind. I am of those moments, the roller-coaster of life, right when everything hits the drop, an underlying reassurance tells you it is going to be alright.

~Zachary Snider


Shabbat Shalom from CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/15/2016 @ 06:00 PM

Today Kohav Zahav BBG #712 was the chapter of the day.

Because we were the chapter of the day, we were tasked with decorating for Shabbat and planning the Shabbat services as well as Shabbat activities. One of the activities involved writing positive messages to each other on a piece of paper. Everyone is starting to bond with one another and become one Jewish community. Since today was the day that we all had elections for our mock chapter boards, the Hebrew word of the day was “elections”.

Shabbat Shalom from Kohav Zahav BBG!


Jacob Remels AZA: The Origin Story

Posted on 07/14/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Before CLTC, we were brothers that were not united. Now we are brothers for life in Jacob Remels AZA #6.

Our CLTC chapter is named after Jacob Remels, an Aleph from Douglas Loeb AZA #1521 who tragically passed away 6 months ago. While sitting in our mock chapter discussing potential names that we could call our new home, our brother Aleph Zac Fleishman proposed naming our chapter in his honor. Zac and Jacob were best friends and Jacob really inspired him to go on CLTC.

Once we had a chapter name we discussed how he also went to CLTC 6 last summer, which prompted us to make that our chapter number. We needed a mascot and we used the Cardinals, which is the school mascot of Jacob’s former high school. We also used the colors of the University of Texas, burnt orange and white, as our chapter colors. These are also the colors of Loeb AZA.

In keeping this honor we are going to mail our CLTC chapter banner to Jacob’s heart and home of Loeb AZA and to further the honor we are going to make memorable experiences for everyone at CLTC 6 2016. After coming back from CLTC 6, Jacob told Zac that it had been “the best 12 days of his life”. We believe that the biggest tribute we can pay to Jacob is by making sure that our 12 days at this program are the best they can be.

Fraternally submitted with undying love, we forever remain the Alephs of Jacob Remels AZA #6.


Day 2 of CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/13/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Hello its Margaux and Amanda from Chapter 1 BBG, the first chapter to take on the challenge of chapter of the day at CLTC 6. As chapter of the day we have many responsibilities, beginning with setting the tone of the day by picking a value to incorporate throughout the day. Ours was “Chaverot”, which is translated as “friendship”. We chose this value because one of the most important take-aways from CLTC is the friendships you make. In order to secure its passage through the day, we passed out pieces of string at flag raising this morning. There were 3 different colors of sting- green, yellow, and white. Each color had a corresponding question as a conversation starter. The goal of this activity was to make new friends by going up to someone with a different color string, having a conversation, and then trading with the other person. It was a great introductory activity, but friendships have also formed in various other ways.

You could describe our morning as “Easy, Breezy, and Beautiful”, because those were the names of our three rotation groups. In these rotation groups we learned a variety of things including leadership skills with Ellen, differences in personalities with Jonah, and broke out our singing pipes in song sessions with Brian and Julia. Being placed in these groups allowed us to branch out and meet people we may not have met before. For example, in song session my (Amanda) group was a little awkward at first but once two girls got up and started dancing the whole group slowly followed, Alephs and BBGs alike. After our rotations and lunch, the fun continued!

As chapter of the day we are also responsible for teaching the group the Hebrew word of the day. Today’s word was “Machaneh”, or “camp” in English. We didn’t want to be boring and simply explain the meaning, so we wrote a song. With the help of our song leaders we changed the lyrics to “Lean on Me” and performed it at flag lowering. Here is our song!

“(verse) Sometimes in our lives we go to camp in West Virginia Then this guy named Guy showed us this word Its camp in Hebrew.  (chorus) Machaneh at CLTC, at Bethany it’s fun for you and me Machaneh, the word of the day and there will be more But we want to hear you say (repeat chorus)”

To end this blog post we would like to acknowledge a special member of our CLTC 6 family….BETHANY THE GOLDFISH! Bethany is our camp goldfish and as chapter of the day it’s our job to babysit him. A common phrase heard in our chapter room is “Watch out, there’s a fish there” because he doesn’t make a lot of noise, seeing as he’s a fish. Well, that’s all for us! Signing off until next time this is Margaux G and Amanda M reminding you that “Fish are friends, not food! CHOMP”


Day 1 of CLTC 6!

Posted on 07/12/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Hello from CLTC 6! We are so excited that everyone is here and our session has officially begun! Today we welcomed 69 new brothers and sisters to Bethany College, where we will soon begin the journey of a lifetime. Once everyone arrived we had a great chapter reveal where the participants found out what their mock chapter would be, who was in it, and who their advisor for the session is! We did this through a fun paper plate activity. We also introduced our CLTC Goldfish named Bethany and took a tour of the campus so that the participants could familiarize themselves with the spaces we will be using. After dinner, the participants went back to their mock chapters to get to know each other a little and get a glimpse of what the mock chapter experience will be like.

The spirit here is so incredible and we can already tell that this group of future Jewish leaders is a special one. We can't wait for the next 12 unforgettable days!


Maddie Fleischmann and Harris Block BBG and AZA Coordinators of CLTC 6, 2016


CLTC 6 2016 Blog Updates Are Coming Soon!

Posted on 07/11/2016 @ 04:00 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 6 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!


9th Day of CLTC 4!

Posted on 07/06/2016 @ 09:00 PM

This morning we began our day with flag raising at 7:55! Agadi AZA presented our action of the day which was themed as "Derech Eretz", or, "good behavior". Each participant was given a yellow wristband for the day to have as a reminder to always be on their best behavior. After flag raising we ate in the dining hall and had breakfast burritos for breakfast. It was probably one of our best meals so far! After that, everyone moved into the Art Gallery for Shacharit services. The theme was musical theater and all of the CLTC community was singing and dancing to some of their favorite musical hits. Following Shacharit, we were split by chapters into shira and a leadership lesson about Jethro respectively. Shira was a lot of fun where we learned some new songs, and we also sang some old ones that we love.

Our next activity was to move into the Science Lecture Hall and watch the film "The Tribes", followed by a discussion. We learned all about our brothers and sisters as we physically stood up when we identified with something as specific as being a writer, baker, only child, etc.

We also had a great lunch meal today. We had chicken nuggets and waffle fries! To make it even better, we had the options of barbecue sauce and honey mustard to dip our chicken nuggets in. It was delicious! After lunch we went right back to work and headed to chapter planning time, where we all worked on our programs that will either be showcased tonight or tomorrow. I can't wait to see what all of the chapters have spent so much time planning! It's going to be a great night tonight and day tomorrow.

With 4 days remaining, all of us here at Bethany are cherishing every moment we have together. The first 8 days went by so fast and we all hope that the rest of it doesn't go as fast. We all love it here and we don't ever want CLTC to end.


CLTC 4(th) of July!

Posted on 07/04/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Today Lekavot BBG was chapter of the day. We were fortunate enough to be able to lead the session on the Fourth of July, which gave us many opportunities to show our spirit and our excitement to everyone at Bethany. We started off the day by getting decked out in red, white, and blue and decorating the gazebo for flag raising! We sang the national anthem and talked about our words of the day, freedom and unity, and what they mean to us and for our country.

Our action of the day was to post on your snapchat story "CLTC 4(th) of July!" To show everyone how much fun we're having with each other.The programs that the staff lead today were also incredibly meaningful.

Although not relating to the Fourth of July, we talked tonight about the Holocaust and the March of the Living journey that is available through BBYO. Everyone got to hear from their brother Alephs and sister BBGs about what this program meant to them, and it was incredibly special.

In the past week, everyone has learned so much about themselves as people and as Jewish leaders and I know that we are all so excited for the remaining days to see what else we can experience.   -Lauren Seltzer


Shabbat Shalom from CLTC 4 Part 2!

Posted on 07/01/2016 @ 06:00 PM

My name is Annie Hirsch and I'm from KMR. Today my mock chapter, Ledaber BBG #1873 is in charge of creating the Shabbat atmosphere as well as our chapter of the day activities. Since today is Canada day, our decorating committee got to do a global theme. We wanted to show in our decorations and Shabbat activities at dinner that BBYO promotes globalization and even though members are from countries all over the world, we stand together as One World.

We made flags for America and Israel to show our connection and Canada to celebrate their Independence Day. On each table, people will be able to write where their ancestors were from and put it in a paper bag. Each table at the end of dinner will have a discussion about what they put in the bag. Everyone will not only learn about their differences but also their similarities. That's what globalization and our One World is: everyone accepting each other's differences and celebrating their similarities.

Everyone at CLTC is Jewish and we come together because of our heritage, but we also need to learn to come together through our differences. My mock chapter wanted to spread this message on this Shabbat so that everyone at CLTC could join together in unity. I'm so excited for my first summer program Shabbat and I'm really happy that I helped to create the atmosphere and set the theme. CLTC is such a great experience and I highly recommend you go next summer if you can!

Respectfully submitted with undying love for my heart and home, Chana Leah BBG #2526, Keystone Mountain Region #33, my Ledaber girls, Bethany banana bread, suite 122, CLTC 4 2016, and the best 12 days of my life, I remain Annie Isabel Hirsch A very proud B'nai B'rith Girl


Shabbat Shalom from CLTC 4!

Posted on 07/01/2016 @ 06:00 PM

Today at CLTC we started by raising the American flag and the Canadian flag. The reason for raising the Canadian flag was that today is Canada Day! We played Canada's nation anthem, O Canada, as we said some fun facts about Canada. The chapter of the day today was my chapter, Ledaber BBG #1873. After flag raising we had breakfast and then went straight to Chapter Elections. After we elected our board, 5 of us passed a motion to change our mascot from Blossom the Pink PowerPuff Girl to the Purple Care Bear, Harmony Bear. We decided to make this motion because we believed that Harmony represents us better than Blossom does. My chapter is named Ledaber because it is the Hebrew word for "to speak". We chose this name because we like to talk a lot and words have a lot of meaning. Our day mostly consisted of getting ready for Shabbat tonight, which we are very excited for!

With Undying Love, I remain, Sydney White


Day 3 of CLTC 4!

Posted on 06/30/2016 @ 09:00 PM

On our third day of CLTC 4, we began our day with an inspiring flag raising to honor those who perished in the tragedy in Istanbul, Turkey on Monday. We continued this theme of honoring lives and inter-faith relations in Shacharit services were Ira’s beautiful words brought the major issues in our society to the forefront of our minds. Afterwards, we began our daily rotations which included Jewish Leadership, Chapter Wellness, and MRIHA. After lunch, we all got together in our mock chapters and voted on our chapter identities.

Everyone is having an amazing time here at CLTC. This is what some teens have to say about their experience so far:

“I already feel so close to so many other people that I have met. I am so thankful for this experience.” Ava Schumacher Kentucky Indiana Ohio Region

“I have met so many people from CRW all the way to NRE and everywhere in between and have already acquired new skills and ideas to bring back to my chapter at home.” Sarah Edelson Liberty Region

“This has been the best two days of my life and it’s amazing.” Jacob Roth Lone Star Region

We can’t wait for the upcoming days!

Shani Katz, Connecticut Valley Region


Day 2 of CLTC 4!

Posted on 06/29/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Today was our first full day at CLTC, as well as our first time being chapter of the day, which meant that we had added responsibilities like cleaning and flag-raising. We experienced our first Shacharit after breakfast, as well.

We were all split into 3 groups for rounds of programs: Snap, Crackle & Pop, and rotated through 3 activities. The first was "Jewish Leadership", in which we identified our personality types and through them, our strengths and flaws. The second program was "Why Are You Here", in which we shared our goals and fears and discussed God through text. In the third, "Behavior Matters", we talked about being a Dugmah Ishit (personal example) and what it meant to us in different contexts.

After lunch we had sessions with our chapters where we discussed leadership, how to present yourself, and we learned some guidelines on being a good and productive board member. We bonded with our fellow chapter members & were able to step out of our comfort zones.

Ori Tsameret, Evergreen Region


First Day of CLTC 4!

Posted on 06/28/2016 @ 09:00 PM

As the first of our twelve days at CLTC 4 2016 comes to a close, it has become apparent that the remainder of the session has been set up for success! The teens arrived this afternoon, beaming ear to ear from the moment they got off the bus and the smiles have only continued to grow as we move through our busy schedule.

From there, we were able to watch CLTC 4 blossom into a newfound community that were truly excited to be together. Most people would think that, naturally, it may be hard to transition with a session of 106 participants. However, this hasn’t been the case here at Bethany—in fact it’s the opposite. Our participants have already cultivated lasting connections with each other that will only grow stronger throughout the session.

Today’s focus was primarily on orienting the teens into our daily routine and traditions, in addition to introductions to each other, the staff, and Bethany College. We also showcased our theme of session 4, “better than ever,” to emphasize the significance of beginning CLTC with a focus on self that, by the end of the session, progresses into a focus on the community.

With new friendships and fresh opportunities to demonstrate leadership skills, we are eager to see where these newfound relationships and curricula will take our teens as they strive to satisfy their endeavors not only for the extent of CLTC 4, but beyond the classroom as they return to their chapters and regions throughout the Movement. Great things are in store!


CLTC 4 2016 Blog Updates Are Coming Soon!

Posted on 06/26/2016 @ 05:00 PM

We’re pumped for CLTC 4 2016, and hope you are, too! Check back here once the program starts for live updates all session long!


Final Day of CLTC 2

Posted on 06/25/2016 @ 09:00 PM

Today is our last day and it was definitely bitter sweet. In the morning we had a B'nai Mitzvah for anyone who hasn't had one. It was a very exciting moment and the CLTC community was there to share the amazing experience. After that, we went into Shabbat programming, and then we went to Shabbat electives where we chose an elective that interested us. After we had so much fun participating in the Shabbat services and electives, we sadly had to begin packing and cleaning. After dinner, everyone held good and welfare for each of their chapters, as this was their last time as a chapter. We then had a very meaningful Havdallah service and we came together as a whole CLTC community. At CLTC Presents, we showed off our skills and chapter banners and shirts. This truly was the best 12 days of our lives and Bethany will be missed.

Jillian Greenberg and Sammi Trepeck


Shabbat Shalom from CLTC 2!

Posted on 06/24/2016 @ 05:00 PM

As we pull into the final Shabbat of CLTC 2, our participants are preparing for powerful programming and meaningful memories. We have had a great two weeks together and our community is growing closer each day. As we enter Shabbat, we will take time to truly rest, explore ourselves a bit further, and wrap up what has been the experience of a lifetime. Shabbat Shalom from CLTC 2!


Chaverot BBG at CLTC 2

Posted on 06/23/2016 @ 09:00 PM

While some are resentful to count down the days until the end of CLTC, the second session of the BBYO Chapter Leadership Training Conference is coming to a close. The past 12 days have been filled with an exploration of leadership qualities and personal identity. One can assure that all participants in the conference will walk away having learned something new about themselves. In the final mock chapter skill session that occurred today, each chapter member of Chaverot BBG was exposed to a variety of techniques for solving problems within her own personal chapter. In the final session, some of the girls were a bit emotional. But that didn't stop them; they got to work on their individual projects to be presented at the CLTC presents event on the final night. It has been a tireless effort amongst the chapter to plan programs and foster an appropriate atmosphere for the whole group; an effort that no girl in Chaverot will soon forget.


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