THE BEREN GREEK LIFE FELLOWSHIP

The Beren Greek Life Leadership Fellowship is a cohort of 15 Jewish sophomores, all involved in Greek life, who are all inquisitive, dynamic, well-networked, and creative, looking for a new way to build innovative, campus-based Jewish activities and initiatives for themselves and their friends.

You're involved in Greek life.  Feel like you should have all the answers? The Beren Fellowship brings together a group of students trying to figure out how to "do Greek," how to balance that with being an adult, asking life's bigger questions, and what place Jewishness has in all this. We'll ask and answer questions like, How do I make friends? How do we deal with rejection? What can I expect in a sexual relationship? How can I cope with conflict? What do I actually believe in? Who do I want to become? Learn Wednesdays with rabbi Gabe Greenberg and JRP staff member Sofy Maxman. Designed for sophomores in the Greek system.

Students in the Beren Fellowship not only learn, but create Jewish life as well. Fellows will learn how to have one-on-one Jewish conversations with peers in their campus networks, and will have the opportunity to create initiatives to bring Jewish life to their fraternities and sororities. Fellows receive a stipend at the conclusion of the semester for their work.

Fellows are responsible  for advancing Jewish life on campus by creating innovative initiatives that are meant to engage otherwise uninvolved Jewish students at Penn. Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Participating in a weekly seminar designed to push students to explore critical questions surrounding leadership, Israel, Jewish identity, and Greek life at Penn.

  • Attending a two-night Shabbaton and orientation held at a retreat center in the Pocono Mountains.

  • Attending bi-weekly check-in meetings.

  • Building new relationships and strengthening old ones with Jewish students on campus.

  • Creating new Jewish and/or Israel-related initiatives on campus.

  • Being outgoing, approachable, and very social (Jewish Shmoozing!)​


Some past initiatives by Penn students include: 

  • Social Entrepreneurial Network (the SEN initiative): An Intern created this club, which brings social entrepreneurs who are extremely successful professionals (such as Edgar Bronfman) to campus to meet and mingle with students.

  • Moral Voices: Another Beren Intern helped create a Penn branch of Moral Voices, a group that spreads awareness about social justice issues.

  • Mentoring Dinners: Dinners around campus with successful Jewish professionals in various fields where students have the opportunity to learn about their careers and how Judaism has played a role in their lives.

  • Shabbat dinners around campus: Hosting Shabbat dinners and discussions for their friends, some interns made celebrating Shabbat something fun and easy to do.

  • And much more!

 
Interested in applying? Find the application here.

Questions or want to learn more? Email Sofy Maxman 

BIANCA SCHWIMMER

Alpha Phi

Bianca is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences studying International Relations with a double minor in Legal Studies & History, a joint minor between Wharton and the College, and Hispanic Studies. Other than being a part of JRP, Bianca is a involved in Penn Democrats, the Benjamin Franklin Scholars Undergraduate Advisory Board, and Penn Students Against the Occupation, a club focused on fostering pluralistic dialogue about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. She is also a Peer Advisor to 7 wonderful freshmen. Her hobbies include playing with her dogs, hanging out with friends, and taking long road trips in the summer. She is a member of the Alpha Phi sorority, and is so excited about being a Beren Fellow this year!! 

ALEX GOLDSTEIN

Chi Omega

Alex is a sophomore from Los Angeles, California studying Communications and Consumer Psychology. Aside from her work with JRP, Alex is a member of the cast of Bloomers, involved in the theater community, and a member of Chi Omega. In her free time she enjoys spending time with friends and hosting game nights. She is very excited to work with JRP in the year ahead! 

MATTY SHENKMAN

Tau Epsilon Phi

Matty rising sophomore studying computer science. He is involved with the ultimate frisbee team at penn and a member of Tau Epsilon Phi fraternity. He enjoys playing the guitar and playing video games with my friends.  He is very excited to join the JRP greek life fellowship.

JAYA KRISHNAN

Delta Delta Delta

Jaya is a rising sophomore from Houston, Texas. She is a part of the varsity field hockey team and the fashion magazine, the Walk, at Penn. She is majoring in Philosophy, Politics, & Economics, and minoring in consumer psychology. She is super excited to be a part of this fellowship!

GEOFFREY BRANDT

Phi Gamma Delta

Geoff is a sophomore from Voorhees, NJ, and is in the college studying economics and computer science. Geoff is involved in his fraternity’s (Phi Gamma Delta) IM sports leagues and enjoys watching Philly sports teams. In his free time, Geoff enjoys hanging out with friends and developing apps. Geoff is looking forward to becoming a Beren Greek Life Fellow.

MIA MONHEIT

Kappa Alpha Theta

Mia is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Health and Societies. She is from the suburbs of Philadelphia. She is a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and is the co-house manager. In her free time, Mia loves spending time with her friends, going on walks through Philadelphia, and exploring new restaurants. Mia is very excited for the year ahead with JRP and being further involved in Jewish life on campus. 

RYAN SIEGEL

THEOS

Ryan is a rising sophomore in The Wharton School from Port Washington, New York who plans to study Finance and Business Analytics. Ryan is fascinated by the interconnectedness of health and business and hopes to find a career that can intertwine his passion for the two in the future. In his free time, Ryan loves to exercise, play tennis, ski and climb mountains with his Dad. His most recent climb was to Mount Rainier in Washington state. Ryan is also an avid New York Yankees fan. 

ALEX DOPPELT

Sigma Delta Tau

Alex is a rising sophomore in the college from Mamaroneck, New York. She plans on majoring in PPE and minoring in Consumer Psychology. On Campus, Alex is involved in the West Philadelphia Tutoring Project, The Upstander Initiative and her sorority, Sigma Delta Tau. In her free time, Alex bakes for her family and friends. She hopes to one day pursue a career in the culinary field. Alex is excited to deepen her Jewish roots on Penn’s campus through the JRP Beren Greek Life Fellowship!

AARON GUELA

APES

 Aaron is a sophomore in APES. He from Great Neck, New York. Some of his hobbies include playing soccer, tennis, and drumming. He is so excited to participate in JRP and get to converse with others about the intersections of Greek life and Judaism. 

ADAM ZHELEZNYAK

Pi Kappa Alpha

Adam Zheleznyak is a freshman from Oakland, CA. He is in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Mathematics. In addition to the Beren Greek Life Fellowship, Adam is freshman liaison for the Penn Undergraduate Math Society, plans events for the Science and Technology Wing, and is involved in the University Scholars program.

MADDY FAIR

Sigma Delta Tau

Maddy Fair is from the suburbs of Philadelphia and is a sophomore at Penn pursuing a major in Psychology and a minor in the Biological Basis of Behavior. At Penn, she is also involved in Service Link, The WALK Fashion Magazine, Upstander Initiative, and Sigma Delta Tau Beta chapter. She loves traveling, photography, cooking, and playing with dogs, and she is excited to be a Beren Greek Life Leadership Fellow!

The Jewish Renaissance Project