Latest Updates

UJS Leadership Fellowship 2024/25 Applications OPEN

Latest Updates

UJS Leadership Fellowship 2024/25 Applications OPEN

UJS Fosters Future of British Jewish Community with Inaugural Leadership Fellowship 2023/24, Applications Open for 2024/25 

Last academic year (23/24), UJS launched the first year of the UJS Leadership Fellowship. Over 100 Jewish students from across the UK and Ireland applied to the four-month programme, with just the top 40 making it onto either the Political or Community tracks. These students come from campuses across the country and are the future of our Jewish community.  

Fellows participated in a range of seminars, trips, and interactive learning experiences to gain deep understandings of, and skills in, communal leadership. 

The Inaugural Seminar: February 2024 

During a day-long opening seminar on 4th February, Fellows had the opportunity to hear from inspirational leaders in the Jewish community. Hen Mazzig, Adam Overlander-Kaye, Gabriel Pogrund, and Josh Nagli, spoke with the Leadership Fellows about their experiences in creating impactful change within the Jewish, British, and international communities, and their own personal leadership journeys. 

This seminar also introduced Fellows to their respective tracks – Political and Community –with tailored sessions and educational material to those themes. This ensured that the fellows were ready to actively engage in the rest of the fellowship. 

Northen Ireland Seminar: March 2024 

In March, UJS took the Leadership Fellows to Northern Ireland. This gave fellows the opportunity to develop an understanding of leadership in conflict, peacebuilding, and a post-conflict environment.  

In Belfast, Fellows met with a wide range of societal leaders, including an ex-IRA member and an ex-British army soldier, a peace activist, a negotiator, and NGO and local government worker, Bebhinn McKinley.  

Fellows also got to learn from Jewish communal leaders in Northern Ireland, spending Shabbat with members of the Belfast Jewish community. 

Post-Northern Ireland Processing Session 

Following an insightful trip to Northern Ireland, Fellows met to discuss their experiences on the trip and were challenged on the ideas they had taken from the trip with Daniel Wehrenfennig from the centre of International Experiential Learning, to understand how what they saw translated to their own leadership journeys. 

Israel Seminar: April 2024 

In April, the Leadership Fellows went on a trip to Israel on a week-long educational trip to further their understanding of what it can mean to be a leader within the Jewish community. During the seminar they heard from a wide range of speakers across the political spectrum, to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a leader and tackling complex situations.  

Fellows heard from a range of key figures in Israeli society including President Isaac Herzog, and his political advisor Amit Farouk, as well as Jerusalem mayoral candidate Waleed Abu Tayeh.  

The group also visited the sites of the Nova Festival, Kfar Aza, and Hostages Square in Tel Aviv following the tragic events of October 7th. 

Pre-Graduation Seminar 

The pre-graduation seminar was an opportunity for Fellows to consider the next steps in their personal leadership journeys. The seminar opened with a keynote talk from Joe Woolf, founder of TastyMates, about entrepreneurship and creative business leadership. This was followed by a panel discussion with Board of Deputies Chief Executive, Michael Wegier, and JLC Chief Executive, Claudia Mendoza. 

Graduation Ceremony: May 2024 

On 1st May, a graduation ceremony for the Leadership Fellows was held in North West London. In groups, Fellows presented their ideas and plans to enhance the future of Jewish communal leadership to key lay leaders and stakeholders in the community. Fellows’ ideas ranged from climate justice initiatives to a ‘model Board of Deputies’ plan to enhance the representation of young adults in the Jewish community.  

The UJS Leadership Fellowship is a core part of UJS’ work to lead and enrich the lives of Jewish students. The programme is a unique opportunity for Jewish students – just as many have done so before them – to gain the skills that will enhance their roles as the future leaders of the British Jewish community.  

Reflecting on his leadership journey through the UJS Leadership Fellowship in a speech at the Graduation Ceremony, Bristol student Edgar Santos said: “This Fellowship has centred the individual, me, and the other fellows, in providing a direct and incredible start on our leadership journey within the Jewish community. I want to repeat my thanks to the UJS team, and indeed to the UJS Supporters for making this possible. I am excited to continue this journey, and for you to continue hearing from all of us about what our vision is for the future of the Jewish community.” 

UJS' Former Head of Programming and Leadership Development, Sarah Wilks, said: “This has been an extremely successful first year of the UJS Leadership Fellowship, and is a great opportunity for students to get to know their peers across the country, and develop together, as the future leaders of our community.” 

Applications for the UJS Leadership Fellowship 2024/25 are now open for all current, and incoming Jewish students at   

Find your local J-Soc