Twenty-four Jewish student leaders from university campuses around the globe gathered in New York City for a three-day training program for members of the 4th cohort of Lauder Fellows. Spanning 16 countries, the Lauder Fellows engaged with WJC President Ronald S. Lauder and other high-level global leaders for roundtable discussions and intellectual lectures, deepening their understanding of the World Jewish Congress and issues affecting the Jewish people.
“You are our future. How you go on from this meeting onward depends on what you want to do,” WJC President Lauder encouraged the Fellows. “To me, the greatest thing I ever did was getting involved with Jewish life," he added.
The seminar started with opening remarks from the Senior Manager of NextGen, Yoni Hammerman, and Head of WJC Strategy & Programs, Daniel Radomski, where the Lauder Fellows learned about the World Jewish Congress. Afterward, the fellows were able to attend a closed-door briefing with an IDF spokesperson who outlined the situation in Israel following the conclusion of Operation Breaking Dawn.
Other noteworthy speakers included Deputy Director for International Affairs United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Dr. Robert Williams, who spoke about the importance of preserving the legacy of the Holocaust in the 21st century, United Nations Outreach Programme Holocaust Information Officer Tracey Petersen, who spoke about her efforts to preserve the memory of the Holocaust and Adela Cojab, who shared her story of combating antisemitism on campus.
The Lauder Fellows also heard directly from WJC staff, including from Associate Executive Vice President Menachem Rosensaft, who spoke about how WJC is working to preserve the legacy of the Holocaust and other genocides, WJC Israel Director General Dr. Laurence Weinbaum, who presented about the relationship between the state of Israel and diaspora and International Affairs Director Yfat Barak-Cheney who spoke about the state of hate online.
The three-day seminar concluded with Lauder Fellows developing their personalized work plans to combat antisemitism and create a prosperous Jewish life in their communities. Previous Fellows have partnered to create a two-and-a-half-day seminar for Nordic Jewish youth and developed an app to help educate the Cuban Jewish community about the history of the community and different resources.