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June 17, 2010 - Image 38

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2010-06-17

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

feature

by Jeremy Sherman and Arielle Braude

meeting the Mamas

BBYO's teen leaders realize they are important Jewish leaders, too.

W

hen we were elected in-
ternational presidents of
BBYO Inc., never in our
wildest dreams did we think we would
be invited to the White House. But
there we were on May 27, attending
the first-ever White House reception
marking Jewish Heritage Month. We
began to realize how much our role
does not exist in a vacuum and that
although we are teens, we, too, are
important Jewish leaders.
Our adventure started when we
gathered with the U.S. presidents of
several other Jewish teen movements.
Danielle Borrin, a proud BBYO alum-
na and associate director of the White
House Office of Public Engagement,
introduced us around. The White
House was incredible.
When we were given the chance to
meet President and Mrs. Obama in the
Blue Room, it was truly the moment of
our lifetimes.
The afternoon continued as we inter-
acted with one amazing Jewish leader
after another, from all different walks
of life: Michael Oren, Israel's ambassa-
dor to the United States; baseball great
Sandy Koufax; children's literature au-
thor Judy Blume; and Regina Spektor,

Israel's Ambassador to the United States

At the White House, BBYO International teen

Michael Oren with BBYO teen leaders Arlene

presidents Jeremy Sherman and Arlene Braude

Braude and Jeremy Sherman

meet singer Regina Spektor, left.

one of our favorite musicians.
Our roles as teen leaders are vital to
impacting thousands of young people
like us; but to be recognized as lead-
ers in the overall Jewish community by
President Obama and his administra-
tion gives us an entirely new perspec-
tive as we're starting our terms.
Given the number of BBYO alumni
we bumped into, it is clear BBYO has
had a real impact on building and in-
spiring the Jewish community during
the organization's 85-year history.
This reception showed how teens
are an important part of the commu-
nity of leaders making a difference in
the world. We are committed to ser-

vice and advocacy in our local com-
munities and to dedicating ourselves to
some of society's most pressing social
challenges.
We are proud to represent a teen
movement that collectively volun-
teered 80,000 hours of local commu-
nity service this year and that raised
$150,000 for charitable programs help-
ing the underserved throughout North
America and the world.
We also worked together with our
partners at United Synagogue Youth
(USY), North American Federation
of Temple Youth (NFTY), NCSY, the
Jewish Student Union (JSU) and Young
Judaea to promote a Jewish teen re-

sponse to the crisis in Haiti, ultimately
engaging more than 10,000 teens in an
emergency relief campaign.
We look forward to interacting
with additional Jewish organizations
to brainstorm how BBYO teen lead-
ers can have a bigger impact and cre-
ate a stronger, more passionate Jewish
community. We want to expand the
relationships we started today with
other inspiring young Jewish leaders
— to connect with them more often and
broaden the scope of the great work
that goes on around the world.
Now we're pondering our next big
dream: "How can we get President
Obama to write our college recom-
mendation letters?" {

Jeremy Sherman, 17, Is from West

Bloomfield. Arlene Braude, 18, Is from

Cherry Hill, N.J. They have been elected to

serve as the BBYO International teen presi-

dents for the 2010-11 academic year.

learning by doing

by Samantha Zwick

uncovering meaning

students explain how commandments impact daily lives.

"Knowledge is of two kinds; we
know a subject ourselves, or we
know where we can find infor-
mation upon it."
— SamuelJohnson

R

ecently, students
in the Bible meth-
odologies class of
Frankel Jewish Academy
in West Bloomfield por-
trayed their two kinds of
knowledge. On May 25,
they spoke about different
positive and negative com-
mandments that we as Jews
are suppose to follow in our
everyday lives.
Each student was given the
opportunity to pick one com-

mandment relatable to his
or her individual life. After
choosing a commandment,
each person researched his
or her commandment, and
found proof texts as to why
we must follow the laws and
how these laws can affect our
everyday lives.
With this research, each stu-
dent was able to give a mean-
ingful speech and explain all
that he or she learned. The
commandments varied from
not speaking slanderously to
honoring one's parents to not
putting a stumbling block be-
fore a blind person. Through
their speeches, the students
were not only able to show

TT2 teen2teen June 17.2010

the knowledge gained regard-
ing their commandment, but
also their knowledge gained
regarding a greater capability
of researching a topic in the
Bible or on the Internet.
Sophomore Annie Ja-
cobson said, "In addition to
learning so much about Jew-
ish culture, I had a blast doing
the project."
The presentations were
creative and allowed each
student to truly understand a
law of the Torah that was im-
portant to his or her life. The
class was able to explain what
they had learned to all who
came to see the presentation,
making it a wonderful pre-

sentation to observe and also
a fun night. ( )

Members of the FJA

Bible methodologies

Samantha

class with their teacher,

Zwick, 16, Is

Rabbi. Reuven Margrett

a sophomore

at Frankel

Jewish Acad-

emy In West

Bloomfield.

visit JNt2t.com

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