Frequently Asked Questions About Working as a L'Taken Staff Assistant
What is the RAC?
For 50 years, the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism ("the RAC") has been the hub of Jewish social justice and legislative activity in Washington, D.C. As the DC office of the Union for Reform Judaism, the RAC educates and mobilizes the Reform Jewish community on legislative and social concerns, advocating on more than 70 different issues, including economic justice, civil rights, religious liberty, Israel and more. The RAC's work can be divided into four main areas: advocating for legislation on Capitol Hill and with the Administration; supporting URJ congregations in their social action programming and advocacy; working in coalition with other advocacy organizations; and running conferences and programs for all ages. Click here to learn more about the RAC.
What is the L'Taken seminar?
One of the RAC's flagship conference is the Bernard and Audre Rapoport L'Taken Social Justice Seminar for High School Students. L'Taken is an intensive four-day study kallah in Washington, D.C., focusing on Jewish values and social justice. Participants engage in: Torah - Jewish learning about social justice values, the legislative process, and the policy and the societal realms in which they can engage; Avodah - Prayer connecting holiness and justice through creative worship services; and Gemilut Chasadim - Action by visiting Capitol Hill to advocate in their Senators' and Representatives' offices for the issues they have just learned about. Click here to see a sample L'Taken schedule or watch a video about the seminar.
What are the responsibilities of a L'Taken staff assistant?
The RAC program team and Eisendrath Legislative Assistants run the seminar and teach the programs in addition each congregation brings a certain number of adult chaperones to oversee its students. Staff assistants support the work of both the RAC staff and the chaperones by assisting with programs, helping supervise the students and lending an extra hand when needed. Staff assistants are college students or recent college graduates in the Washington, D.C., area who are interested in contributing to the positive Jewish environment created at the L'Taken seminars. Staff assistants work from Friday evening (around 4:30 or 5 p.m.) until Sunday afternoon (around 1 p.m.); all meals and hotel accommodations are provided during that time.
How much does a L'taken staff assistant earn?
A L'taken staff assistant's stipend varies by age and number of previous years as a staff assistant. The amounts listed below reflect the total you would earn for working from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon:
- If you are in college AND:
- It is your first year working as a L'taken staff assistant: $150
- It is your second year working as a L'taken staff assistant: $200
- It is your third year (or more) working as a L'taken staff assistant: $250
- If you are out of college AND:
- It is your first year working as a L'taken staff assistant: $200
- It is your second year (or more) working as a L'taken staff assistant: $250
The RAC staff also needs help with various office tasks during the week leading up to and the week following a L'taken seminar. If you are available to work at the RAC office for four (4) hours during the week before or the week after a L'taken seminar, you can receive $50. Working this shift is not contingent on working the weekend of that seminar.
How do I apply to be a L'Taken Staff Assistant?
The application for 2013-2014 L'Taken staff assistants will open in the fall.
I have more questions about being a L'Taken staff assistant who can I contact?
Contact RAC Program Associate Molly Benoit via email or at 202-387-2800.