Teenage Rebellion

Toby Klein

by Toby Klein for JUF News

"So who exactly is going to take you seriously," a neighbor laughs. "Don't underestimate us," I warned. "You'll soon see we're more than Jewish summer camp rejects..." Read More »

Making Mitzvot part of your Bar or Bat Mitzvah

Bar Mitzvah Guide

See TOV's Guide to Making Mitzvot Part of Your Bar or Bat Mitzvah

Israel Experience

Israel Experience

Redeem your Jewish Federation Israel Experience Funds 
(including SKIP, Gift of Israel, Bar/Bat Mitzvah Certificates and Walk with Israel Vouchers)

Diller logo small Chicago Diller Teen Fellows

 Applications for Cohort 3 now available here! Scroll down for more information!

"After joining Diller, I was exposed to 19 other Jewish teens from all different backgrounds... We all bring something different to the table and it fascinates me! Diller has given me, and continues to give me, the knowledge that goes far beyond the basics and I couldn’t be more grateful!" --Liel Hagen, Cohort 1 Fellow 


Diller Teen Fellows is a 15-month fellowship for high school students interested in exploring topics in leadership, Jewish identity, social justice, and Israel. The Diller program operates in 22 communities in North America, South Africa, and Israel with the goal of developing future generations of active, effective leaders with strong Jewish identities, commitment to the Jewish people, respect for pluralism, and love of Israel. Chicago launched its first cohort in 2013 in partnership with JUF's partnership region in Israel: Kiryat Gat, Lachish, and Shafir.


Participants in Chicago Diller Teen Fellows will be part of a prestigious international community. Programming is centered around Diller's four pillars: Leadership, Jewish Identity, tikkun olam (social justice), and Israel.

As a Chicago Diller Teen Fellow, you will:

  • Develop leadership skills during 12 interactive  workshops and three fun weekend retreats that include dynamic group discussions, Jewish text study, connections with community leaders, and social service projects
  • Host Diller teens from Kiryat Gat, Lachish, and Shafir during the Jewish Community Mifgash (Encounter), a ten-day peer exchange in Chicago
  • Travel to Israel for the three-week Israel Summer Seminar, which includes touring and exploring Israel, getting to know over 400 Diller teens from North America, South Africa, and Israel, and one week in Kiryat Gat, Lachish, and Shafir where YOU create the itinerary
  • Create and implement an Alumni Impact project that addresses an issue important to you and your peers
  • Forge powerful relationships with a diverse group of Jewish North American, South African, and Israeli teens

To get a taste of the program content, visit the Chicago Diller Teen Fellows Blog, which is updated throughout the year.



Are you ready to grow as a leader and make a difference? Become a Diller Teen Fellow!

Chicago Diller Teen Fellows is now seeking applicants for Cohort 3 to begin in the fall of 2015. Candidates must submit a complete online application and two letters of recommendation and participate in a group interview experience in June. Applications can be found here and the form for references can be found here

Program Requirements

Fellows will be chosen based on their leadership aptitude, commitment to Jewish learning, passion for serving their community, and interest in exploring their connection to Israel. The program is open to rising sophomores and juniors throughout metropolitan Chicago. Applicants must complete a written application, submit references, and participate in a group interview to be considered for the program.

The Diller program requires a significant time commitment from Fellows and their families. Local programming takes place throughout the metropolitan area. Attendance at all programming is mandatory for participation. In addition to scheduled program time, there are projects that the Fellows will be expected to complete outside of meeting times, like preparation for the Jewish Community Mifgash (Encounter), Community Week in Israel, and the Alumni Impact projects. To better understand the time commitment, download a sample Annual Calendar.

Learn more

Visit Diller Teen Fellows Chicago on Facebook and the Chicago Diller Teen Fellows Blog for pictures and updates about Diller in Chicago!

To learn more about the history of Diller Teen Fellows and other Diller communities, visit the International Diller Teen Fellows' website.

Email for more information about Diller in Chicago.

The Diller Teen Fellows program in Chicago is funded by the Helen Diller Family Foundation, a supporting foundation of the San Francisco Federation’s Jewish Community Endowment Fund; The Crown Family; The Swartzberg/Zoller Family Foundation; and the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. Each fellow receives a $7,100 subsidy, resulting in a cost of $3,400 to the participant, which covers all program costs. In addition, Fellows can use up to $2,000 from their SKIP funds and they can use Bar/Bat Mitzvah certificates and Gift of Israel. Need-based scholarships are available and no applicant will be turned away for financial reasons.