Jewish Chaplain at Amherst College

Hillel International | Amherst, MA, United States

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Posted Date 8/15/2023

Jewish Chaplain at Amherst College

Role Overview

Amherst has taken a leadership role among highly selective liberal arts colleges and universities in successfully diversifying the racial, socio-economic, and geographic profile of its student body. The College is similarly committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration and staff.


Job Description

Amherst College invites applications for the Jewish Chaplain (Casual Position, No Benefits) position. Given Amherst’s distinction as one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, the successful candidate will demonstrate the ways in which they bring value to and will work towards supporting a broadly diverse community.


The Jewish Chaplain serves a vital function in the Center for Religious and Spiritual Life (RSL) in supporting our Jewish community (particularly students) and our broader campus more generally. The Chaplain will work to create an inclusive, vibrant, and pluralistic Jewish community, effectively engaging students across diversities of Jewish expression and serving as a resource in this pluralistic setting. The Chaplain serves as advisor for the Amherst Hillel student group, and maintains regular contact with student leaders and members of that group, including mentorship, collaboration, and support. While primarily focused on Jewish programming and pastoral care, the Jewish Chaplain also contributes to interfaith, contemplative, and service programs sponsored by RSL. The Chaplain provides a welcoming ministry to a diverse student population and College community, and takes appropriate actions to support a diverse workforce by participating in the College’s efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment. The position mainly requires weekday work hours, with the exception of joining Hillel for roughly half their Shabbat dinners on Fridays, and attendance at some evening and weekend programs at times to be determined based on the Chaplain’s and students’ availability. Flexibility and availability for select additional evening and weekend programs (e.g. panels, vigils, Baccalaureate, etc.) is expected.


The Jewish Chaplain role averages 19 hours of work a week and runs August through May.


Summary of Responsibilities:


  • Provide for Jewish religious and cultural programming on campus and make all reasonable efforts to accommodate the religious and spiritual needs of Jewish students as well as faculty and staff
  • Support students in preparation for weekly Shabbat dinners and holiday celebrations.
  • Support and attend student initiated programs, including evenings, weekends and holidays.
  • Advocate for and advise on the ongoing development of Jewish resources on campus (e.g. kosher for Passover food, the Jewish Lounge)
  • Seek and share opportunities from local and national organizations for immersive Jewish experiences, including conferences, service opportunities, travel to Israel and other relevant locations.
  • Ensure meaningful and diverse opportunities for Jewish expression, and consistently promote a welcoming and lively pluralistic Jewish community
  • Create programs that educate about and celebrate the diversity of Jewish life on campus and in this world
  • Participate in Religious & Spiritual Life programming (e.g. interfaith panels and service events, Baccalaureate, vigils, retreats) 
  • Participate in College committees as eligible and able
  • Make provision for weddings and funerals for the campus community and alumni/ae as requested and as available


  • Advise Hillel, including leadership development and mentoring with their student leaders
  • Develop strategies for contacting and serving uninvolved/under-involved students 
  • Provide one on one spiritual counseling to students, and when time allows to faculty and staff by request 
  • Serve the campus community in times of crisis


  • Hold regular office hours
  • Attend regularly scheduled Religious & Spiritual Life staff meetings 
  • Communicate in a timely manner with students and staff, balancing weekly hours between on-campus commitments and responsive attention to communications
  • Remain current with trends in chaplaincy through membership and service in the Association for Chaplaincy and Spiritual Life in Higher Education (ACSLHE) or comparable organizations and professional development opportunities




  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Trained in the Jewish tradition and able to facilitate Jewish study, prayer, and gatherings
  • Organizational and pastoral care skills
  • Ability to teach Jewish tenets and provide a welcoming ministry to a diverse student population and College community
  • Previous professional work and/or volunteer experience, preferably in a Jewish organization and/or working with college-age adults
  • Self-motivation and the ability to work independently, while also appreciating supervision and teamwork
  • A commitment to creating an inclusive, vibrant and pluralistic Jewish community
  • Ability to effectively engage students at all levels in Jewish life and to serve as a resource in a pluralistic setting
  • Ability to work flexible hours to engage students and attend events
  • An approachable, dynamic, engaging personality with outstanding interpersonal skills
  • Strong oral, written and non-verbal communication skills
  • An ability to manage logistics and multiple tasks with competing deadlines
  • A knack for creative problem-solving
  • Energy, a sense of humor, resilience and flexibility
  • An ability to take risks and learn from situations when things don’t turn out the way you thought they would


  • Master's degree in Jewish Studies, ministry, or theology


Amherst College offers many opportunities for professional growth and development, continued learning, and career advancement.


TO APPLY: Interested candidates are asked to submit a resume and cover letter online at

Please be sure to upload all requested documents prior to clicking Submit. Applications cannot be revised once submitted. (Current employees and students should apply by clicking on the Career icon from their Workday home screen) Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

To find information about job group and level (JGL) follow this link.


About Hillel International

In 1923, Rabbi Benjamin Frankel started Hillel with humble means, a noble mission and a breathtaking vision: to convey Jewish civilization to a new generation. Today, Hillel International continues to enrich the lives of Jewish students and is the largest Jewish campus organization in the world at more than 550 colleges and universities across North America and around the world. As Hillel evolves as an organization, the mission remains steadfast: to create lasting connections with every Jewish student that foster an enduring commitment to Jewish life, learning, and Israel and train them to become the next Jewish leaders.

Hillel is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to creating an accepting and inclusive environment for all.

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