Jewish Education at The Davidson School

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Student Spotlight - Dana Levinson

Posted by Danny on September 10, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Dana Levinson is a second year student in the Jewish Experiential Education concentration. In this interview she tells us about what brought her to Jewish education, what she sees as an area for improvement in Jewish Education, and about her project for the Jewish Futures Competition.

Why did you choose the field of Jewish education?

Choosing the field of Jewish education came quite naturally to me as I grew older and as my experiences within the Jewish world became more profound. As I became more involved in USY as a teen, Ramah as a young professional, and other Jewish ventures throughout university, it became increasingly clear to me that the field I was most interested in working in--and growing in--was Jewish education. It was a field that I felt was progressing and evolving, and this evolution was something I wanted to be a part of.

Why did you choose Davidson?

 I chose Davidson because the new Experiential Education concentration seemed right up my alley. It was innovative and exciting and allowed for a tremendous amount of learning opportunities that would guide me on the right path as a Jewish professional.

What do you see as the greatest opportunity / area for growth or improvement in the world of Jewish education?

 Israel education is an ever evolving process and the way in which it is encountered leaves much room for growth and improvement. Programs and resources that focus both on content and emotional connection are crucial, as are fostering and strengthening relationships between young Israelis and young Americans. The area I find most interesting is the growth of cultural literacy between these two social groups.

What are you learning at Davidson that you are most excited about?

I'm excited about the Jewish media course I'm taking right now, as I have always been fascinated by the cultural implications that Judaism and Jewishness have had on American popular culture.

Please tell us about your project for the Jewish Futures Competition.

Last December Ramah received a Signature Grant from the Covenant Foundation which enabled us the privilege of hiring RustyBrick app developers to fulfill the vision of creating a Ramah social networking app for Iphones, Androids, and Ipads. The goal of the app is to allow our Ramah staff members to engage in the actual world using a virtual platform, ie: the app, and utilize the Jewish leadership that they acquire all summer long during the year. The app is made up of a series of missions that fall into categories such as Israel Education, Tikkun Olam, Alumni Engagement, etc. In order for the user to complete a mission and earn points, they must upload a photo or a video and share it in the virtual space. The app is a great way for staff to connect in both the actual worlds and the virtual worlds and promote a sense of togetherness and Jewish values.

Categories: Day School Teaching, Jewish Experiential Education, Synagogue Educational Leadership

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