Monmouth Junction resident Sarah Portilla, Associate Director for New Initiatives at the Rutgers University Hillel Foundation, has been selected by Hillel International to participate in the prestigious Harrison Leadership and Professional International Development (Harrison LAPID) Initiative. Harrison LAPID provides select Hillel staff members with skills to further their professional development, so that they may engage and empower future student leaders.
Supported by Hillel International Board of Governors member and Vice Chair of the Board of Directors Dr. Lynne B. Harrison, the program’s mission is to provide engagement, leadership and professional skills for staff and students and to inspire them to create their own tzedek (social justice) initiatives, providing a Jewish context to develop their individual values, leadership potential and sense of peoplehood. The program is in its third year.
“Sarah is a key member of Hillel’s professional team at Rutgers,” said Andrew Getraer, Director. “She has introduced several important initiatives, such as The Jewish Mentoring Initiative, the Birthright Follow-Through Intern program and supervises the program which has sent more than 250 students on Taglit-Birthright Israel and more than 100 students on Alternative Spring Breaks.”
“Hillel International could not have selected a more deserving person for the Harrison LAPID initiative,” he said. “We, the staff, Hillel students and Rutgers University will all benefit from the enhanced skills she will acquire.”
Selected from a talented pool of applicants from around the globe, Portilla is in her fifth year at Rutgers University Hillel. Prior to joining Rutgers Hillel, she was Associate Program Manager at Big Brothers Big Sisters in New York City and served as a Jewish Campus Service Corps Fellow at UMass, Amherst.
A native of Cranford, Portilla earned an MSW from the University of Pennsylvania and a BA in Political Science and Jewish Studies from Rutgers University. She resides with her husband Dan and their son Noah in Monmouth Junction.