Director of Youth Engagement
Woodlands Community Temple has a long-standing reputation for excellence in engaging our youth. The Director of Youth Engagement will build upon this success by keeping our pre- and post- b’nai mitzvah experiences fresh, innovative, and relevant to the lives of our young people. This person is responsible for the holy task of building lasting relationships among our young people, helping them to find a path to Jewish engagement that meets their particular interests and needs.
The Director of Youth Engagement will report directly to the Director of Congregational Learning.
This is a 10 month (academic year) position at Woodlands Community Temple with summers open for other employment opportunities. We encourage the Director to join the staff of a URJ summer camp or similar Jewish youth program.
- Create, innovate, and implement the vision and programming for teen engagement that reflects the wants and needs of our temple youth, as well as the latest insights in youth engagement.
- Create individualized pathways to Jewish engagement both within and outside of our temple in order to help each young person find a way that is most authentic for them.
- Foster deep, significant relationships with our youth.
- Develop a madrichim leadership program that helps our teens build leadership skills. This is done in consultation with the Director of Congregational Learning.
- Advise WoodSY, the Woodlands youth group, which functions as a “for teens, by teens” leadership opportunity within the youth community.
- Foster a safe and meaningful environment for youth participating in each and every program.
- Evaluate goals and effectiveness of programs upon completion in order to improve future programming.
- Create and maintain our alumni network by communicating with WCT college students, working with clergy, and the College Committee to plan and execute programs.
- Promote URJ camps and teen programs.
- Promote participation in the New York Area Region of NFTY, and participate in events along with teens from WCT. Build a relationship with NFTY-NAR leadership and other area youth professionals. Take an active role building NFTY presence within the temple and regionally.
- Develop, chaperone, and manage logistics for immersive experiences created at WCT or available via outside agencies such as, but not limited to, annual teen retreats and trips, 3rd/4th grade late night, 5th/6th retreat, 9th grade sexuality retreat, L’Taken, Civil Rights Journey.
- Assist clergy, staff, and lay leadership in the planning and execution of immersive experiences for all ages.
- Develop and teach the 7th grade program, which includes the Mitzvah Challenge, “What It Means To Become B’nai Mitzvah” curriculum, Comparative Judaism, and Holocaust Education in partnership with the Director of Congregational Learning.
- Creatively develop and run the Monday night high school Academy program with support from the Director of Congregational Learning. This includes envisioning curriculum, teaching classes, advising staff, developing the calendar of events, and acting as lead point person on Monday nights.
- Build team identity and relationships with 3rd through 5th grades as a way to foster future engagement via retreats planned with support of the DCL, school board, and faculty.
Ritual & Worship
- Work with the WoodSY Religious and Cultural Vice President to develop and execute teen services for Erev Rosh Hashanah and Kol Nidre.
- Help plan other teen ritual experiences as requested by the teens.
- Participate in leading family services on the High Holy Days.
- Is welcome, but not required, to participate in congregational Friday evening services and other ritual observances.
- Empower teens to participate in and help lead regular community worship with support from the clergy, as well as to create and lead youth worship opportunities
- Assist clergy and lay leadership as needed in the development and execution of creative worship services and programs for families and teens (i.e. Yoga Shabbat, Nashir song leader training, etc)
Marketing & Communications
- Develop and execute marketing plans, using all available vehicles including but not limited to social media, print, WCT website, experiential, one-to-one contact, Makom for all youth and community engagement programs.
- Manage the Woodlands Youth Experience web page, Facebook page, Twitter account (and other social media vehicles) and oversee the postings of the WoodSY VP of Communications to ensure appropriate, timely postings in accordance with temple social media policy.
- Maintain communication channels with temple teens and their families to keep them informed of programs and engaged as a part of the community. This includes a monthly email of upcoming events both from the temple and greater Jewish community (i.e., NFTY and URJ).
- Attend weekly staff meetings, school board meetings and monthly Board of Trustees meetings.
- Attend meetings of the Youth and Family Engagement Committee, and ensure that the teen members of the board are present at meetings as appropriate.
- Responsible for management of youth activities budget with oversight by Director of Congregational Learning, including appropriate planning and oversight of WoodSY and other youth and community programming expenses and fundraising.
- Maintain attendance records at youth events and work with professional staff and lay leadership to analyze attendance and utilization for future planning and cost control.
- Seek out and attend professional development opportunities by the Jewish Education Project, Jewish Federation, URJ and other organizations.
- Minimum 2 years of experience working with young people through religious school teaching, Jewish camp experience, or other Jewish educational programs.
- BA required; Masters degree or advanced study/certification in education/ Jewish education, experiential learning, or related areas is a plus.
- Computer skills, knowledge of social media, and Google Suite.
- Knowledge and appreciation of, and respect for, the mission of the Reform Jewish movement.
Salary Range $43,000 - $48,000 (paid over a 12 month period) plus benefits