In true USY icebreaker fashion- what’s your name, grade, chapter, region, and favorite kitchen utensil?
Hi! I’m Noa Kligfeld and I’m a senior from Temple Beth Am Los Angeles (aka TBALA #BetterBethAm) in the FANTABULOUS Far West region. My favorite kitchen utensil is, without a doubt, an ice cream scoop.
What is your favorite moment from your USY experience?
In middle school, I was too self-conscious to dance at Bar and Bat Mitzvah parties. I would stand off to the side and talk to my friends, even though deep down, I wanted to dance. During the dance at my first USY event, I tried to be a wallflower, but my incredible new friends pulled me to the dance floor. They taught me how to be proud of my wacky, terrible, spastic dancing—and now I dance (publicly, embarrassingly, spontaneously) so often that my friends beg me to stop.
Why did you choose to pursue your position on International Executive Board?
I believe that the most important thing that anyone can do in USY is to help someone feel that they matter. I have aimed to live by this principle since I first joined USY, and hope to bring this message to as many people as possible.
What do you want to achieve this year as USY International President?
I hope to spread inspiration and meaning-making, to support chapters and regional officers, to nurture the goals, ideas, and passion of the IEB, and to meet as many USYers as I can.
The advice you would give to a freshman just starting out in USY is:
Be brave. Walk up to someone new and introduce yourself. Believe that people like you and want to talk to you. Trust me—they’ll be so grateful that you approached them! Then relish and hold on to every second. It flies by.
Tell us your six-word USY memoir:
Found friends. Developed dedication. Smiles often.
If you could have International Convention happen anywhere – where would it be?
Hawaii allllll the way! But #ICSoCal in my home region comes pretty close 🙂
What does USY mean to you?
Home. Family. Acceptance. Optimism for the Jewish future. Supporting Israel. Supporting each other. Bonding. Connections. Warmth. Safety. Giving back to the world. Being with Jewish teens who are like me. Meeting people who are not like me. Having friends who live all over North America. Still holding out hope that one day IC will be in Hawaii. Balancing friendship with collaboration. Honing my leadership skills. Helping others hone their leadership skills. Working together to make USY the best it can possibly be. Music. Meaning. DMCs. Fun. A place for me to breathe. A place where I can truly be myself. Love. Laughter. A place where I belong.