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Writing beyond the Academy

The deadline to apply has passed.

Read Brett Ashley Kaplan's "Writing Beyond the Academy: A Report"

The Association for Jewish Studies is pleased to announce a four-day online seminar to help academics develop skills for sharing their expertise with the wider public and engaging diverse audiences beyond the walls of academia. Participants will workshop their own pre-prepared writing samples and participate in instructional seminars on topics such as writing op-eds, personal essays, narrative non-fiction, and cultural criticism, as well as public speaking and managing social media. The workshop will be held Monday, June 3 – Thursday, June 6, 2024 on Zoom for four hours each day. The exact timing will be announced closer to the workshop dates. It will be led by Samuel Freedman, award-winning author of Jew v. Jew: The Struggle for the Soul of American Jewry, professor of journalism at Columbia University, and columnist for The New York Times, and will feature additional instructional guests.

Applications will be accepted on a competitive basis from among the membership of the Association for Jewish Studies, with a submission deadline of April 15, 2024. Applicants must have a terminal degree in their field.

Participants will be expected to come to the workshop with 1 to 2 works-in-progress. These can include editorials, personal essays, cultural criticism essays, narrative non-fiction pieces, or similar works intended for non-academic audiences.

Participants are also expected to submit at least two pieces of public writing for potential publication within six months of completing the Writing beyond the Academy workshop.


Applicants must be current members of the Association for Jewish Studies for the 2024 membership year. Applicants must also have a terminal degree in their field. Graduate students are not eligible to apply.

Application Instructions

Applicants will be required to submit:

  • •     CV
  • •     Writing sample (piece of public writing such as an op-ed)
  • •     A personal statement, no longer than one page single-spaced, explaining your interest in this workshop. Please make sure to address the following questions: 1) Why do you think your work has the potential to reach audiences beyond the academy? 2) Why do you want your work to reach wider audiences, beyond the scholarly academy? 3) What, specifically, do you want to share about your work or Jewish Studies? 4) What skills specifically do you want to develop in this workshop?