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The Workum Interns: In Their Own Words

Where are They Now?

A survey of 150 alumni going back to the inception of the program in 1988 confirms the program’s success: build strength in Jewish community service agencies by creating opportunity while building community.

Almost 54% of those contacted returned the survey, updating Workum on what they did and what they are doing today! 21% of the past interns are working at a Jewish Agency as a career and 42% are Volunteers outside of their careers. Of the 42% who are Volunteering, a remarkable 71% are Volunteering for a Jewish Agency or Cause! Here are a few quotes from the surveys:

“My Workum intership was perfect for someone interested in a career in journalism. It gave me the opportunity to conduct interviews, write articles and edit. That’s first-hand experience that many college students don’t get until later in their college career. I still remember our visits to the various Jewish agencies. I keep what I learned back then in the back of my mind as I’m covering stories today. Having an understanding of community agencies is important as a member of the Jewish community but it’s equally important as a reporter who’s job is to understand the many facets of the community in which I am working.”
-Deb Silverman, WCPO Cincinnati

“Workum was huge for me. I was going to be a lawyer and took Jewish Studies courses for fun. My internship reversed the whole thing.”
-Brett Pelechovitz Stern, M.A. Jewish Communal Service and Management

“My internship did involve working with people with disabilities, which I continue to do today.”
- Jennifer Hilb


“I think working at the Jewish Foundation made me especially aware of the Cincinnati Jewish community. I saw that the opportunities in our Jewish community are continually expanding, and that Cincinnati offers many, many different ways to explore our Judaism. It is comparable to larger cities all over the US, and that's something to be proud of.”
-Genevieve Pecsok, student at Washington University in St. Louis and 2014 intern at the Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati last summer.

“The Workum internship instilled a sense of pride in me. Pride in my city, pride in my temple, and pride of my Judaism. I will move forward in my professional development with a strong sense of where I came from.”
-Jay Burgin, student at Denison University and 2014 intern at Isaac M. Wise Temple last summer.


"Working as a summer intern for the Workum Fund was one of the best choices I have ever made. I had a great experience working in the Jewish community and feel like my work really made a difference. In addition to the work, I also made some great connections through my internship which has opened up some great networking opportunities for me."
- Max Krieger, Kent State University,  2013 American Jewish Archives Intern

"Workum was my first connection to the professional Jewish world. Jewish philanthropy became more accessible and more appealing because of my participation in the Workum program."
 - Alex Burte, University of North Carolina, 2013 Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati Intern

"The Workum program does a fantastic job of connecting us with Jewish professionals across the board--over the course of the summer, I met and worked with education professionals, marketing experts, career specialists, allocations directors, and rabbis, to name just a few. I learned a lot from these individuals and from the organizations at the JCC, and from this experience solidified my career plans to be a rabbi."
- Mia Perlman, Washington University, 2013 Jewish Community Center Department of Jewish Life Intern

"Since the internship has ended, I have volunteered multiple times at Cedar Village to spend more time with my residents. I made connections unimaginable connections with my residents. I miss everyone dearly and would not change a single thing about this past summer."
- Molly Loftspring, Univeristy of Cincinnati, 2013 Cedar Village Intern

"Working at the Federation was a one of a kind experience for me. I learned so much and met so many wonderful people during my time there. Workum left a huge impact on me with regards to the importance of Jewish Community."
- Jordan Evans, Indiana University, 2013 Jewish Federation Planning and Allocations Intern

"Workum has helped me grow professionally through a hands on approach. Rather than sit and do administrative work all day, I had the opportunity to work on practical initiatives that are utilized and valued by not only the Jewish community, but by the various religious communities around Cincinnati."
- Justin Kirschner, Ohio University, 2013 Jewish Community Relations Council Intern

"My Workum internship really helped me understand how a Jewish organization works while also gaining many skills I need for my major. I loved getting to work with a lot of different people and getting to design different types of promotional materials for the JCC. Having this experience will definitely help me in the future when I am looking for co-ops and jobs."
- Jaimie Maxwell, University of Cincinnati, 2013 Jewish Community Center Marketing Intern