ATHENS, Ohio (May 19, 2006) -- Ohio University student Rachel Friedson has been selected as the 2006 Mandel Federation Executive Recruitment and Education Program (FEREP) Scholar. Friedson, a senior double-majoring in political science in the Honors Tutorial College and French in the College of Arts and Sciences, will receive a $20,000 scholarship for her graduate tuition and a Certificate of Jewish Communal Leadership, as well as a two-year position within the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland.
"Rachel's enthusiasm is contagious; it's real. She draws you in and makes you want to work with her," said Rabbi Danielle Leshaw of the Hillel at Ohio University. "She's very organized, out-going and well-connected. All of those factors will contribute to her continued success."
Friedson is the head student intern for the Hillel at Ohio University and has served as the vice president of Delta Zeta sorority and as a Student Leadership Advisor, a position dedicated to encouraging individual student involvement and promoting the development of new and existing student organizations. Her honor's thesis addresses faith-based initiatives and the Jewish Community.
"When I first started working with Rachel, she was very interested in the nonprofit sector," says Judith Millesen, assistant professor of political science and Friedson's thesis advisor. "Now she's found a way to link her dedication to the nonprofit sector with her Jewish spirituality, so that they evolve together and strengthen one another."
Friedson will pursue a Master's of Social Work with a concentration in community development at either the University of Michigan or Case Western Reserve University. She plans to work in the Jewish nonprofit sector, ideally in community planning. Her ultimate dream is to direct community planning for the Jewish Community Federation.
"When I first came to OU, I was very determined to be an ambassador or lobbyist," Friedson said. "Working with Hillel and Dr. Millesen made me realize that my niche in political science—and my main passion—was working within the Jewish community."
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