Creating a legacy
The Kaplan Seminar for Emerging Professionals was made possible through the generosity of Edward H. and Irene Kaplan.
For more information
Amy L. Sales, Director
Fisher-Bernstein Institute for Jewish Philanthropy and Leadership
Waltham, MA 02454-9110
Kaplan Seminar for Emerging Professionals
The Kaplan Seminar for Emerging Professionals cultivates leadership talent for the Jewish community. Designed for outstanding Jewish leaders with five to ten years of professional experience in the Jewish community, the seminar builds managerial and leadership capabilities, roots them deeply in Jewish tradition, and provides professionals with much-needed time for learning, reflection, and renewal. It deals with issues paramount at this stage—the reality of middle management, the joys and frustrations of the job, and the path of one’s career. It also delves into topics of concern to all communal leadership—lay and professional relations, supervision, fundraising, and the place of the profession and the organization in a rapidly changing world. The seminar strengthens the Jewish communal enterprise by educating and enriching its professional leadership.
History of the Kaplan Seminar
In summer 1984, the first Seminar was held at Brandeis University under the aegis of the Hornstein Program in Jewish Communal Service. Originally called the Sherman Seminar, the program responded to the need for continuing education and professional development for emerging Jewish professionals. Its foundation was reflective practice and its approach was experiential education. In 2005, with generous support from Edward H. Kaplan, the program was renamed the Kaplan Seminar, and in 2007, the Fisher-Bernstein Institute for Jewish Philanthropy and Leadership joined the newly renamed Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program in sponsoring the Seminar. While holding true to its initial purpose and maintaining its focus on reflective practice, the Kaplan Seminar also recognizes new realities in the field of Jewish professional leadership and incorporates serious study of nonprofit management and organization development.
The Kaplan Seminar is Special
It includes participants from diverse organizational settings across North America--a rare opportunity to break through the communal “silos,” to learn about other sectors within the community, to broaden participants’ understanding of the field as a totality and their own role and opportunities within it.
It exposes participants to senior practitioners in the field, experts in leadership and management, and Brandeis University academics--a special opportunity to explore work issues from diverse perspectives.
It has direct relevance to participants--content based on topics selected to suit the particular class as well as case material developed by participants.
It employs diverse approaches--a melding of the cognitive with the experiential, the theoretical with the practical, knowledge of the field with knowledge of oneself.
It builds community among participants--resulting in safe space for exploring professional issues and an ongoing community of practice for support throughout the year.
It is limited to 20 participants - large enough to represent the diversity of the Jewish professional community but small enough to attend to the learning needs of each participant.