CASJE Announces New Research Use Group

January 25, 2024

CASJE is pleased to announce a new initiative, the Research Use Group (RUG), which commenced January 23, 2024. Aimed at Jewish education and engagement professionals who work with Jewish teens, the RUG program will run for ten months and conclude in October 2024.

The Research Use Group (RUG) is designed to deepen and expand participants’ ability to effectively navigate through the vast landscape of information concerning teens, Jewish teens, and the surrounding environment. Over the course of the program, participants will learn how to frame questions for inquiry, access and assess relevant research, summarize and synthesize information across sources, facilitate conversations around implications for practice, and identify gaps of knowledge that need future research.

The program is facilitated by Dr. Bethamie Horowitz, Director of Professional Learning Communities at CASJE, and Dr. Laura Yares, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Michigan State University.  Both have significant hands-on experience translating research evidence for use in Jewish organizational settings. Dr. Tal Vaizman, a CASJE Applied Research Fellow, who studies teens and teen culture, is assisting the team.

Participants in the first cohort include Abby Cutler, Director, Teen Experiential Education, Builders of Jewish Education, Los Angeles; Nessa Geffen, Senior Manager, Program Incubation, Root One; Odelia Epstein, Director, Knowledge, Research and Data, Prizmah; Daniel Kurtz, Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives, Maccabi USA; Lirón Lipinsky, Vice President, Enrichment Strategy, BBYO; Maya Tipiere, Learning and Research Associate, Foundation for Jewish Camps; Jen Anolik, Director of Pedagogical Design, Moving Traditions.

Want to be part of a developing national network of professionals looking to build their capacity to lead research-informed initiatives? Stay tuned at