JTI Alumni Spotlight
Judaism was a constant fixture in my life throughout high school. I was involved in USY, March of the Living, Camp Shalom at the Mandel JCC and other programs with JTI. I was even president of Park Vista High School’s JSC.
I’m sure you can understand why I was extremely nervous when I left home for Deland to attend Stetson University; I had no idea if there would be any kind of Jewish community there. But I was pleasantly surprised—though the school itself is not very big, the people at Hillel were warm and welcoming. The friends I made helped me adapt to university life.
I eventually used the values I developed through JTI and JSC and took on several leadership roles at Stetson. I became president of the University Hillel, vice president of my sorority and a resident assistant for other students on campus.
Now, I’m faced with a much different environment—studying abroad in Moscow, Russia. My time away from home has given me a unique perspective on how my leadership skills are truly a product of the relationships I gained and lessons I learned through JSC and JTI. I learned how to empower—and be empowered—by others. Every professional in this amazing network of leaders is a treasured resource for any organization they work with in their lives. If any of them ever needed anything, I would be there. I’m sure that goes both ways.
Without JTI, I can honestly say I would not have the opportunities I have today. For that, I am forever thankful.
- Billie Ventimiglia, Park Vista High School Class of 2011
Special thanks to our caring mentors: Lesley Levin, Jamie Cahn, Adrienne Winton, Staci Narkier Monina and countless others.
Are you an alum of JTI? Want to share your story? Send it to Irene.Sachi@JewishPalmBeach.org and we will feature you!