IN an unparalleled opportunity to learn from leading politicians, journalists, lobbyists and community leaders, 45 students from the Australasian Union of Jewish Students (AUJS) recently attended a three-day Political Training Seminar (PTS) in Canberra.
Among those addressing the AUJS delegation was Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
AUJS national political affairs director Ariel Zohar, who led the planning of this year’s PTS, remarked, “It’s unreal and completely unique and a testament to the success of AUJS and the Jewish community, with PTS being a widely respected and anticipated program.”
By offering the opportunity for students to hear from eminent and driven leaders from both sides of the political spectrum, as well as attend skills-based training sessions, PTS inspires many young politically interested Jewish students to actively engage with an array of political, social and cultural issues.
Reflecting on his participation in both the 2016 and 2017 seminars, Toby Rosengarten who is also an AUJS Susan Wakil Fellow, commented, “PTS 2016… [gave] me the inspiration and confidence to try and create change in issues I’m passionate about. I left this year’s trip feeling more empowered and refreshed thanks to the diversity and drive of the speakers.”
National chairperson of AUJS, Isabella Polgar, remarked that a particular highlight was hearing from past AUJS executives, such as Jack Pinczewski, who now works in the Prime Minister’s office.”It is remarkable to see AUJS’ name recognised so wildly in Federal Parliament, when even at a time of government turmoil, we were addressed by over 15 members of parliament who spoke fondly of their previous encounters with the Jewish community and of the importance of getting involved in politics,” commented Polgar.
The seminar also comprised a private tour of the Prime Minister’s office and cabinet room, the opportunity to witness an impassioned question time at Parliament House and visits to other key sites in the nation’s capital.