Nivonim Leadership Program

In so many respects, the Nivonim experience is the culmination of one’s journey as a camper through the edot (divisions) here at Machaneh Ramah. But it is also the beginning of a new journey: that of one day coming back to camp as a member of our summer tzevet (staff). To that end, a key element of the Nivonim experience is the summer-long Nivonim Leadership Training Program.

All of our Nivonimers will participate in the Leadership Training Program and will be considered Madrichim B’Nivonim (counselors that are Nivonimers) — or MiNis for short. MiNis will be placed in one of the many Netivei Manhigut (Leadership Tracks) which will be led by our amazing tzevet (staff). We will dedicate several hours, each week, for training with our nativ (track) leaders, as well as time that each nativ will spend training “in the field.”

Our Netivei Manhigut will be lead by our amazing 2017 tzevet Nivonim:

Shalom! My name is John Byrne and I am absolutely psyched for this kayitz. I’m originally from Chevy Chase Maryland, and this year marks my third year on tzevet at Ramah Palmer, and my 10th year total. I’m excited to get to know Nivonim 2017 and see all the wonderful things I’m sure you’ll all accomplish. I’m already pumped to get started on Yom Sport and help everyone become true leaders in camp. I also plan on working with the softball teams for Yom Roo. During the not-summer I study Computer Science and Software engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology, so I’m always game for a conversation about the tech world. I can’t wait to get to Palmer, I’ll see you all there!

Hi Nivonim 2017! My name is Rachel Nassau and I am so excited to be your madricha this kayitz, the best kayitz yet! This will be my 10th kayitz at Ramah, and my third as a madricha. I am originally from Barrington, RI, and I just finished my sophomore year at Washington University in St. Louis, where I am Pre-Med and studying Global Health and Environment. I also enjoy playing volleyball, I eat ice cream almost every day, and I am a huge fan of Boston sports teams. I know this edah will accomplish incredible things this kayitz, and have the best time doing it. Nivonim was the highlight of my camp experience, and I cant wait to be a part of this special program again. See you all soon!

My name is Eli Rachlin and I am beyond thrilled to be embarking with you all on the legendary masah (journey) of Nivonim 2017. In my eight years at camp, many of my most fond and/or impactful memories came from when I was in Nivonim. It is my belief that you should all be coming to back this kayitz with one priority: making sure you and your peers have the best summer of your lives. It is a true honor to work with the rest of your tzevet to make sure each and every one of you has the opportunities to do so. A little bit about me — I attend the University of Michigan and study Cognitive Science. My favorite food is whipped cream. I grew up in South Burlington, Vermont. My most prized possession is a tree branch I no longer own. I love to play soccer and all other sports, I love to talk about music. Above all I love learning about what makes people who they are, both through what they like to do and the stories they tell.  There is nothing I am more excited for than seeing every single one of you grow on together, in what is sure to be a shared unforgettable experience for you and your best friends.

Hi everyone!  Many of you might already know me: I’m Ben Roberts. I’m from North Andover, Massachusetts and am a Gann Academy Alum. I am now just finishing up my second year at Franklin and Marshall college, where I am majoring in public health and minoring in religious studies. This will be my 8th kayitz at camp, and my 3rd as a tzevet member. Around one week after camp ends, I will be leaving for a semester abroad in New Delhi, India. I can’t wait to see all of you soon, at camp!


Shalom Nivonim 2017! My name is Ruthie Sherman and I’m going to be your madricha this kayitz (third time’s the charm)! This will be my tenth summer at camp and my third summer as a madricha! I spent this past year studying sociology at Barnard College in New York City. I cannot wait to have an incredible kayitz with you guys! Some interesting things about me are I have the biggest sweet tooth, I am very invested in social justice and I am terrible at finishing books! I’m so excited to watch your edah grow as leaders and have an amazing impact on other edot! Looking forward to seeing you all so soon!!!!!!

Shalom!! My name is Jillian Singer and I’m so excited to be coming back to camp for Niv ’17! I’m a rising senior at Tulane University majoring in Political Science, and this year I’ve interned at Hillary for America and Planned Parenthood. Camp is my favorite place in the world, and I can’t wait to be part of the most incredible and meaningful kayitz this edah has ever experienced. See you soon in Palmer!


Hello! My name is Eve Stein! I have just finished my first year at McGill University where I am studying Islamic Studies and Russian Literature. I like to spend time outdoors, especially by the yam (beach) in Tel Aviv. I like to listen to music with good harmonies or good rap lyrics. I also like it when trees first flower in May. I can’t wait for this kayitz and all of the adventures we will be having. Looking forward to meeting you all.


Hey Nivonim! My name’s Saul Wildavsky and I’m super pumped to be your madrich this kayitz! This will be my tenth year at camp and I couldn’t be more excited to be coming back to Palmer. I’m just finishing up my sophomore year at Carleton College where I’m a physics major. Some of my favorite things to do are play ultimate frisbee, do omanut, and just hang out around the kfar. My favorite camp food has gotta be pizza bagels but perogis are a close second. My Niv summer was one of my favorite experiences ever and I can’t wait to make this kayitz incredible with all of you!

Aryeh Kalender – Rosh Nivonim: Oceans Rise. Empires Fall. The Ground Shakes. The Mighty Trees grow tall. And all roads lead to Nivonim. My name is Aryeh Kalender of the fourth royal family of Kalender, and I am honored to serve this great edah in the role of Rosh Nivonim this kayitz. I have been training with endless workout montages in order to be a part of what will be a kayitz to remember. I stand before you all excited to see what magic Nivonim 2017 will bestow upon this earth. You’re probably wondering how I ended up in this situation, as your Rosh Nivonim. It all started about a year ago when an extraordinary set of circumstances led me to end up living in Riga, Latvia for a year. Many, countries, lots of Russian, two influential Bulgarians, one Latvian movie cameo, and 73 feet of snow later, I ended up back here. This will be my 5th time through the Nivonim program. I’m a University of Maryland alum, and a lover of all things Machane Ramah. I am beyond thrilled to return to this lovely Machane and cannot wait to undertake a mighty quest all together. The quest for Nivonim greatness. I’m ready. Your tzevet of a lifetime is ready. ARE YOU?