Anna Meyers grew up with a strong commitment to Judaism, Jewish learning, and the Jewish community. Like many children, she resisted going to religious school on Sunday mornings when she was young, but unlike the many Jewish young people whose religious education ceases at the age of 13, her interest deepened after her Bat Mitzvah. She not only continued her own education, but she also worked as a teacher’s aide at her temple’s religious school and served as the student representative on the temple school board during her last two years in high school. As her rabbi, Sarah Mack, comments, Anna “held her own in these meetings. She did not hesitate to offer her opinions, even when she was the only student in the room. The adults on the committee respected her insights.”
Anna entered Northeastern in the fall of 2011 as a Music Industry major. She quickly realized, however, that her personal and professional interests drew her in a different direction, and by the spring of 2012 she had switched her major to Jewish Studies and Religion. “My first year of college, I struggled being away from [my] temple community,” she remembers. “The more I missed it, the more I realized it was not just my friends that I missed, but learning about my religion. There is so much to know about Jewish religion, culture, and history, and I felt as though I had only uncovered a very small piece of that knowledge.”
Since then, Anna has explored Judaism and the Jewish experience through a number of courses: Jewish Religion and Culture (the gateway course to the major and minor), American Jewish History, and Hebrew 1. She is currently enrolled in Hebrew 2, Jews and American Popular Culture, and Music of the Jewish People, and is looking forward to studying in Israel this summer with Jewish Studies’ new Dialogue of Civilizations program to Israel.
Although Anna does not yet know exactly what kind of a job she will pursue, she is deeply committed to a professional career within the Jewish community. “The people at my temple inspire me to be the greatest person that I can be, which is why I know that my days should be spent working for this community,” she writes. “I used to think that remaining involved at temple would be enough, but now I know that my studies and career belong there as well.” She is interested in exploring the rabbinate, religious school administration, or the executive director position; ideally, a co-op position in the next year or two will provide her with greater exposure to these arenas. “I want to spend my days and nights at the temple because being there has a way of bringing me inner peace,” she comments. “I want to make my ‘inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement,’ and I truly believe that I have the best chance at doing so in the Jewish community.”