Joseph Stern Social Justice Fellowship for High School Students

What does it mean to strive for a better world? What can any one person actually do? 

The Joseph Stern Social Justice Fellowship for High School Students is a cohort-based, intensive, 7-month program that gives teens of all abilities the opportunity to learn about and practice making change in their communities, with support from an experienced activist.
Over the course of the program, participants will:

  • Learn together about ways to effect change in the world—and how their identities play into their roles as changemakers.
  • Engage in in-depth discussions on social justice issues selected by the participants (such as abortion justice, antisemitism, climate change, immigration, queer rights, and racial justice) and explore them from a contemporary and historical lens, with a focus on NYC and including possible action steps.
  • Meet with community leaders, activists, and others who are doing work around these issues.
  • Practice what they've learned in small teams. Participants will select and explore one social justice issue in depth, and use the methods of change we've studied (direct service, advocacy, philanthropy, social media, etc.) to make an impact.
  • Deliver closing presentations where each group shares what they've learned, what they've accomplished, and what they plan to do next.

23 Thursdays, Nov 3–May 18 (except Nov 24, Dec 22 + 29, Feb 23, Apr 6 + 13), 6–7:30 pm, $700

Sessions will take place at the JCC. It is important to us that this program be financially accessible for all who are interested. If you would like to request financial assistance for this program, please fill out this form and we will be in touch within a week to discuss next steps.

The Joseph Stern Social Justice Fellowship is copresented by BBYO, Avodah, and the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, and funded by the Matana Giving Circle.

Avodah works with Jewish communities across the country to deepen their approach to social and economic justice, and to understand and engage with the most crucial issues that people in America are facing today.

BBYO is the leading pluralistic Jewish teen movement aspiring to involve more Jewish teens in more meaningful Jewish experiences.

The Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan’s Joseph Stern Center for Social Responsibility provides people with the inspiration, knowledge, skills, and support needed to become informed advocates for justice.

The Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan’s Jack and Shirley Silver Center for Special Needs builds and nurtures an inclusive and accepting community where individuals with disabilities and their families have opportunities to make meaningful connections to each other and their communities.