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Dear <<First Name>>,

Having recently joined M² as Chief Operating Officer, I am so excited to open this month's newsletter. 

To my work at M², I bring with me two decades of experience leading large-scale, broad impact programs and a passion to affect social change through high-impact educational programming. I am thrilled to get to know this incredible community and help M² grow as it revolutionizes the field of experiential education.

I’m delighted to join the team, and would also like to extend a warm welcome to another new addition: Mike Mitchell. A nonprofit finance professional with a passion for Jewish life and education, Mike has recently joined the M² family as Senior Director of Finance and Administration.

This month we at M² were fortunate to launch two in-person gatherings: the Chicago Educators Cohort, and our first Senior Educators Cohort (SEC) in Israel.

We could not be more excited to see so many new members of the M² community in person. In her latest op-ed for eJewish Philanthropy, “The Dance Between Sea and Land,” M² Senior Program Director Mollie Andron considers the importance of in-person gatherings and our gradual re-emergence into them. 

Also in this newsletter: Meaningful resources for Purim celebrations, featured work from our incredible alumni, staff announcements, and more!

I look forward to getting to know each of you, and learning about the important work you do. 

No’a Gorlin, M² Chief Operating Officer

SENIOR EDUCATORS COHORT ISRAEL LAUNCHES

This month, we kicked off our inaugural Senior Educators Cohort - Israel. This 23-person cohort is comprised of leading educators and changemakers from Israeli organizations such as Beit Prat, Tzofim - Israel Scouts, ANU Museum of the Jewish People, Gesher, the Hartman Institute, a range of mechinot and many more.  

In their first seminar overlooking the beaches of Herzliya, participants dove into current approaches to values exploration in the pursuit of igniting and deepening the impact of experiential education in Israel. One highlight was a glass blowing workshop in picturesque Caesarea, where participants connected head, heart, and hand to examine the complex relationship between creation, education, and learning.

See how the program came to life >>

Meet the fellows (Hebrew) >> 

AN 18-MONTH JOURNEY FOR CHICAGO COMMUNITY IMPACT BEGINS

This month we also were fortunate to launch the Chicago Educators Cohort, an 18-month immersive professional development initiative, convening prominent educators and professionals from across Chicagoland, in an effort to transform the landscape of Jewish education and boost engagement across the region. 

In their first gathering, participants dove into the foundations of experiential Jewish education. Each participant was introduced to their mentor, and, against the backdrop of Chicago’s WNDR Museum, began to consider how they can work together to nurture collaboration in their communities.

See how the program came to life >>

Meet the fellows >>

GET TO KNOW OUR NEW TEAM MEMBERS

We are thrilled to welcome two new additions to the M² family and executive team: No’a Gorlin, Chief Operating Officer (COO), and Mike Mitchell, Senior Director of Finance and Administration.

Meet No’a >>

Meet Mike >>

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT SPA: INSPIRING AND ELEVATING CLEVELAND EDUCATORS

For too long, Jewish educators have been isolated at home or in their offices without the opportunity to connect, collaborate, and recharge their professional batteries. 

The Jewish Education Center of Cleveland offered a two-day Professional Development Spa to help community educators feel cared for, inspired, and refreshed. The program was offered in partnership with M²’s Alumni Consulting Grants program. The initiative was Led by Rabbi Ilana Schachter, a graduate of M²’s Senior Educators Cohort and Relational Learning Circle, together with three other M² graduates – Judy Schiller, Melinda Mersack, and Danya Shapiro.

The program convened 25 Cleveland educators, who arrived excited to learn, laugh, share, and build new relationships. A particular highlight was the “Finding Comfort in the Storm” activity, where each attendee reflected on the “storm” we have all been in for two years, and considered which values have helped them stay afloat.

THE DANCE BETWEEN SEA AND LAND 

“Growth and development do not happen in silos or behind a window, whether literal or emotional. They happen in moments of uncertainty and stretching, and the only way to experience them is to go out there and try.”

As applications to Senior Educators Cohort 6, our flagship international program, began to arrive, M² Senior Program Director Mollie Andron reflected on the gradual re-emergence of in-person programming.

Read Mollie’s article in eJewish Philanthropy >>

Follow the footsteps of Noah in “Limtzo Manoach: Finding Peace – A Values Exploration” >>

EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES FOR PURIM

Looking for activities and resources that connect your learners to the meaningful, timeless themes of Purim? 

Check out Days of Gratitude’s Purim resource, “Recognize Human Need,” which includes activities that guide learners toward acknowledging and giving thanks for our privileges, abilities, and liberties; paying attention to the roles that abundance and scarcity play in our lives; and balancing our needs with those of others.

Get ready for Purim with Days of Gratitude >>

AT THE CORNER OF BROADWAY AND THE TORAH

What can the West Side Story song “America” teach us about the Israelite spies’ entrance to the land of Canaan? 

In Verses, Rabba Rachel Kohl Fingold, graduate of M²’s Relational Learning Cohort and community convener of M²’s Passport to Jewish Life Fellowship in Montreal, draws connections between Broadway showtunes and the Torah. 

Learn more about the podcast >>

M² GRADUATES HELP BRING BBYO’S INTERNATIONAL CONVENTION TO LIFE

Four incredible M² graduates – Liron Lipinsky, Associate Vice President; Meir Tannenbaum, Director of Jewish Enrichment; Rachel Dingman, Director of Jewish Enrichment, and Eric Hunker, Director of Music & Aleph Enrichment, brought joy, inspiration, energy, and pride to over 2,500 teens from around the world at BBYO's International Convention. Mazal tov to Liron, Meir, Rachel, Eric, and their colleagues at BBYO on their successful event!

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