The COJECO BluePrint Fellowship

The BluePrint Fellowship is a year-long program for Russian-speaking Jewish adults ages 25-40 to explore personal and collective identity through the creation of Jewish community projects, supported by group workshops, one-on-one mentorship, and a mini-grant.

Blueprint 2017 Application launch coming soon

The BluePrint Fellowship brings together a select group of Russian-speaking Jewish artists, intellectuals, and innovators to explore the link between personal identity and creativity.


What does it mean to be Jewish for someone born in the Former Soviet Union and living in the United States today? The BluePrint Fellowship offers participants the opportunity to examine and explore this question on their own terms. Chosen through a competitive application and interview process, fellows are able to bring their ideas to life and thus shape this community-wide conversation.

BluePrint Community Projects

BluePrint projects from years past have been innovative initiatives that impact the Russian-speaking Jewish community and Jewish community at large in areas such as: arts & culture * media & technology * gender & sexuality * literature * education * environment * children and family life * social justice * philanthropy

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Offering fellows a deeper historical and cultural perspective on the Jewish people and contemporary issues of the Jewish world today, with a unique focus on post-Soviet Jewry through a series of informal educational experiences.

Motivating participants to become more active members of the Jewish community through a personal connection to and familiarity with an array of projects, organizations, and approaches to Jewish community life.

Providing fellows with the tools to develop successful community projects through hands-on professional workshops and peer-to-peer review.

One-on-one mentoring guides Fellows in setting clear goals for project objectives, offers options for achieving desired goals and outcomes, and identifies possible resources that go beyond traditional methods.

Russian Jewish community projects created since 2008


Projects continuing beyond their Fellowship year


New Jewish non-profit organizations resulting from BluePrint projects


Fellows who became Jewish professionals or lay leaders


People engaged by BluePrint Fellowship community projects



  • Fellows must be Russian-speaking Jews between the ages of 25 and 40, residing in the NYC area.
  • Fellows must have an original concept for a community project with an explicitly Jewish theme and an anticipated impact on at least 50 people.
  • Fellows must participate in the program fully, including a three-day weekend retreat and 8 evening workshops, which take place monthly on weeknights.
  • Fellows must implement their community projects within the Fellowship year, including in a public launch event.


The BluePrint Fellowship begins with a weekend retreat on and is followed by monthly educational workshops,  where fellows meet other talented thinkers and social activists, gain a new perspective on the community’s historical context, and hone their project management skills. BluePrint sessions are designed to inspire and support participants through the development of their projects, while exploring new ways of looking at personal history and identity.


Through a guided grant application and reporting process over the course of the program, each fellow is awarded a mini-grant of up to $5,000 for the implementation of his or her community project. The average grant awarded is $3,000.


Fellows are matched with distinguished coaches, experts in the field of each participant’s project, who work with them one-on-one to help them further their own creative goals.


Each fellow is likewise paired with a BluePrint alumnus mentor who can offer guidance, support, and advice to a new fellow, having had firsthand experience of participating in this process.

Selection Criteria

For the 2015-2016 BluePrint Fellowship cycle, preference was given to candidates with long-term vision and aspirations for their community project and their personal community involvement. While projects must be implemented within the the program year, the Fellowship should be viewed as a  launching pad for on-going endeavors.


Preference was given to community project proposals in the following areas:

  • New mediums for informal Jewish education among RSJ (e.g. games, multimedia, animation, etc.)
  • Israel engagement
  • Russian-Israeli community
  • Volunteering, Philanthropy & Fundraising
  • Family & Children educational workshops

Blueprint fellows

Current Fellows
Past Fellows

Irina Khokhlova Distanced from the Source

Irina Khokhlova is a filmmaker, video artist, television, and web video producer living and working in New York City. Originally from Moscow, Russia, she moved to NY in 1992 .She received her Master of Arts degree in Filmmaking from The New School University in 2006. She began her career as a TV and film editor, later moving on to producing and directing for television and the web. Her independent work includes documentaries, short narrative films, fashion films and video art. In 2009 the Television program Irina produced received an NY Emmy nomination in the Arts: Program/Special category.

Dina Pruzhansky Central Park: An Original Musical Story

Dina Pruzhansky is a Russian-Israeli pianist and composer based in New York. After winning a number of nationwide music competition in her native country Azerbaijan, she moved to Israel. Since 2006, Ms. Pruzhansky resides in New York City. An alumna from Mannes College for Music, she has appeared in solo and chamber music recitals throughout the United States, Russia, Israel, Belgium and Germany, and has shared the stage with many leading artists, including the soloists of the Metropolitan and San Francisco opera houses and the soloists of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. New York City recital venues include Merkin Hall, Le Poisson Rouge, Steinway Hall, Bechstein Piano Center, Union Club, the Yamaha Piano Salon, Scandinavia House, The Ukrainian Institute, the Russian Permanent Mission to the U.N. and others.  

Ross Denisov IDF Project

Ross Den was born in Ukraine in a Jewish family of medical professionals. In the mid 90’s his family immigrated to the United States.  Ross was accepted to John Jay College of Criminal Justice and in 2000 started a part time job at NYPD working as a Police Cadet. Shortly after September 11, 2001 Ross left to Israel to join the Israel Defense Force (IDF). He served in the IDF for two years and participated in countless counter-terrorism missions in the West Bank and the border of Lebanon, being currently assigned to a battalion of reservists.

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Blueprint Fellowship Alumni

Alumni Projects

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Speak Memory

Tatyana Levina
Yuliya Levit
Nadya Meykson
Irina Sheynfeld

Inheritance of a Story

Tatyana Levina
Anna Rozhdestvenskaya
Yuliya Levit

Handmade Charity NYC

Ekaterina Schaltuper
Ekaterina Kovalenko
The BluePrint Fellowship is generously sponsored by

UJA-Federation of New York and Genesis Philanthropy Group.

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