(San Francisco, CA, June 29, 2017) Four extraordinary undergraduate and graduate level interns join The Contemporary Jewish Museum (The CJM) this summer for several months of professional mentoring and experience-based learning and program development. The interns, part of The Museum’s newly formalized commitment to professional development for university students, include an accomplished stand-up comedian and social justice activist; an internationally experienced archivist and art researcher; a 2018 Albright Fellow; and a student of graphic design.
“The CJM is a teaching museum,” says Fraidy Aber, Director of Education and Public Programs. “Interns are well integrated into The Museum’s workings and staff happenings, providing many opportunities for dialogue, exchanges of ideas, and access to the diversity of professionals working here. This is a cultural institution where learning is central, and interns add to the diversity of voices that are collaborating at any one time. Developing a more robust internship program at the university level continues our commitment to future leaders of the field and to The Museum’s intergenerational approach.”
The internships are the result of several important local and national relationships with universities and organizations, including the second year of an internship placement from George Washington University’s new Masters in Experiential Education and Jewish Cultural Arts and a Masters level internship of the University of San Francisco’s new Masters Program in Museum Studies. CJM staff members taught the USF graduate course Museums and Social Justice in spring 2017, further developing the relationship with that university. This is The Museum’s eighth year of hosting a Kohn intern, a program that pairs college undergraduates with Bay Area Jewish nonprofits, and the fifth year of a long-standing partnership with Wellesley College.
Bader is a rising senior at Wellesley College, where she is majoring in International Relations with a concentration in History and minoring in Middle Eastern Studies. Bader studied abroad in Rabat, Morocco in the fall of 2016 in an intensive Arabic language program. During her sophomore and junior years, she was the News Editor and the Managing Editor for The Wellesley News and this past spring, she was selected as a Fellow in the 2018 class of the Madeline Korbel Albright Institute for Global Affairs. She is writing her senior honors thesis on the politicization of Sunni and Shia identities in Iraq under Saddham Hussein’s dictatorship. Bader, who is Jewish, is interested in issues of transitional justice, free press, and identity politics as it relates to war and violence and is pursuing a career in journalism, with a focus on culture and politics in the Middle East and North Africa. At The CJM, Bader is working within the Development Department to write grants. She hopes to leave with a strong grasp of development work and how to create compelling narratives for supporting the arts.
Ochoa is from Guadalajara, México and holds a degree in history from Universidad de Guadalajara. Since 2006, she has worked in private and public archives including Archivo de Indias, Bibliotéque Kandinski, Bilbiotéque National de France, Archivo General de la Nación, and Archivo de la Real Audiencia en México y la Nueva Galicia. In 2012, Ochoa was part of the research team for a book about the Mexican painter Francisco Toledo for Fomento Cultural Banamex. She researched and digitalized more than 350 artworks located all over France. From 2013 to 2015, she managed the art production and research for the artist Eduardo Sarabia, working with institutions like Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca, Museo de Arte de Zapopan, Instituto Cultural Cabañas en Guadalajara. Ochoa, now living in San Francisco and pursuing her Master’s degree in Museum Studies at USF, is working within the Curatorial Department as the artist liaison for the upcoming exhibition Sabbath: The Dorothy Saxe Invitational.
Fleitman is passionate about creating and implementing meaningful social justice education with a particular interest in reaching Jewish audiences. She has spent the past few years as the Senior Program Manager at Jewish Women International, where she authored, facilitated, and managed original educational programs on sexual assault and intimate partner violence prevention. These included Jewish-oriented programs (like Boy to Mentsch, a healthy masculinity program for the Orthodox community) as well as secular initiatives (like Safe Smart Dating, a program on interpersonal violence for Greek life). She has recently created programming for organizations including HIAS and Avodah: the Jewish Service Corps and is interested in the intersections of Judaism, social justice, and cultural experiences. Outside of work, Fleitman performs stand up comedy regularly and lives in Washington, D.C. Fleitman finished her internship at The CJM in spring, creating curriculum for high school students about resilience and the Holocaust.
Kanzler has had an interest in the arts from a young age and knew almost immediately entering college that she wanted to pursue an education within the arts. Throughout her three years at USF, she has studied within the design and fine arts realm, including publication and web design, sculpting, and painting. This past semester, she interned for Bob Cut magazine, contributing print and branding collateral. She is passionate about making art accessible and accommodating for everyone, which has sparked an interest in working within the nonprofit sector. For The CJM, Kanzler is conducting audience research on behalf of the Education Department and design projects as well.
In addition to each of their individual fields of work at The Museum, this group of interns will come together for professional development opportunities including panels with Museum professionals, meetings with The Museum’s Executive Director Lori Starr and other department directors, and visits to other institutions.
With the opening of its new building on June 8, 2008, The Contemporary Jewish Museum ushered in a new chapter in its twenty-plus year history of engaging audiences and artists in exploring contemporary perspectives on Jewish culture, history, art, and ideas. The facility, designed by internationally renowned architect Daniel Libeskind, is a lively center where people of all ages and backgrounds can gather to experience art, share diverse perspectives, and engage in hands-on activities. Inspired by the Hebrew phrase L’Chaim (To Life), the building is a physical embodiment of The CJM’s mission to bring together tradition and innovation in an exploration of the Jewish experience in the twenty-first century.
Major support for The Contemporary Jewish Museum’s exhibitions and Jewish Peoplehood Programs comes from the Koret Foundation. The Museum also thanks the Jim Joseph Foundation for its major support of innovative strategies for educating and engaging audiences in Jewish learning. Additional major support is provided by an Anonymous donor; Alyse and Nathan Mason Brill; Carbon Five; the Helen Diller Family Foundation; Suzanne and Elliott Felson; Gaia Fund; the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation; Grants for the Arts/San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund; Walter and Elise Haas Fund; the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties; Wendy Kesser ; Maribelle and Stephen Leavitt; Nellie and Max Levchin; Millennium Partners, the Bernard Osher Jewish Philanthropies Foundation of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund; The Lisa and John Pritzker Family Fund; RayKo; Dorothy R. Saxe; Seiger Family Foundation; Taube Philanthropies for Jewish Life and Culture; and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
For more information about The Contemporary Jewish Museum, visit The Museum’s website at thecjm.org.