Masa Israel broadens study-abroad options
Many college students have romantic notions of studying abroad in places like Italy or France, but Aaron White found himself at Tel Aviv University thanks to Masa Israel Journey, a program that connects young Jewish adults with study-abroad, internship and volunteer opportunities in Israel.
“I got to see how another culture lives and witness firsthand the complicated and sometimes quixotic attempts at politics that define Israel and its neighbors,” said White, who grew up near Palm Springs and now works for a think tank in Oakland.
These days, though, students are flocking to the Holy Land out of more than an interest in the central role it has played in Jewish culture, history and current events. Yonatan Barkan, director of academic affairs for Masa Israel Journey, sees the nation’s rise as a global hotbed for technological, medical and scientific innovation as being the next draw for young adults ages 18-30. “Israel today is a crossroads of professional, academic and personal opportunities,” he said. “Israel [has much to offer] undergraduate students, grad students and young professionals who want to leverage its business culture and booming tech scene in order to get experience they can’t get anywhere else.”
For colleges graduates, landing the dream job has become even more difficult in these recent economically challenging years. Also, going straight from college into a job may not seem the most attractive prospect. Many grads want to travel, but the need for money sends most straight into their careers.
What if you could do both? Spreading your wings and working abroad at the same time is a feasible option. For college graduates looking for short-term, professional experiences away from home, Israel has always been a fruitful source of opportunities.
With a wide range of internship programs available to build up your résumé while living in a completely new and exotic culture, there isn’t much you can’t do in the Jewish state.
The Hamilton Fellowship
The Hamilton Fellowship was specifically created for high-achieving Jewish college students and college graduates who want to expand their business skills, build a marketable résumé and learn the intricacies of day-to-day operations in emerging international markets.
The fellowship offers a placement in Buenos Aires, Argentina, commonly referred to as the Paris of Latin America.
Buenos Aires has the third-largest Jewish population in the world behind Jerusalem and New York City. Although the community is large, it is extremely close-knit, and you will meet like-minded Jews from all over the world and have the opportunity to attend meetings at the Buenos Aires office of the world’s largest Jewish student organization.
For more information, visit jewishinternships.org.
Founded in 1986 as a travel company geared toward the young Jewish traveler, Israel Way-Oranim offers graduates a multitude of opportunities.
Oranim’s Tel Aviv Internship Experience allows you to spend five months in Tel Aviv, where graduates are exposed to new career opportunities. Internships are available in almost all career paths, including business, technology, finance, arts, sports, communications, politics and education. Receive hands-on guidance and practical training while working on several important projects. Essentially, you will bypass the American tradition of working your way up from the mailroom and instead experience the Israeli way, where on day one you’re treated as though you’ve already been working there for years.
Oranim also offers short-term and summer internships in Israel for students and professionals of all ages. An internship placement coordinator will work with you to build the ideal experience. Internships are available for two months and longer, and in every field. All graduates of the short-term Internship Experience will, upon completion of internships, receive a certificate of accomplishment from Oranim and their supervisor.
The Israel Way-Oranim project also includes other programs such as See Galilee, a program aimed at young Jewish leaders who are concerned about social issues in Israel, and the TOV program, which combines an internship with volunteering experience.
For more information, visit destinationisrael.com.
Masa Israel Journey
Masa Israel Journey offers university graduates and young professionals more than 200 internship, academic and career development opportunities all over Israel, lasting from five to 12 months.
Real Life Israel offers a five-month immersion and interning program in Jerusalem. The program includes Hebrew-language learning, countrywide tours and local activities in addition to your choice of top-level internships. The program is designed to give you an authentic experience of life in Israel.
Career Israel is a five-month professional internship program open to college graduates from all over the world, offering you an online database of more than 500 internship opportunities.
Choose from a variety of internship opportunities and gain the knowledge, skills and experience you need to be competitive in today’s global economy.
For more information, visit masaisrael.org.
OTZMA is a 10-month program divided into three parts. In the first part, you join an absorption center with other immigrants, where you learn Hebrew, volunteer, get to know fellow participants and take part in educational seminars. In the second part, you participate in community service.
In the final part, you intern for top Israeli service organizations in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv, living in the centre of Tel Aviv or at campus apartments in Jerusalem at Hebrew University. During this stage of the program, each participant will work in a top-level NGO that is dedicated to making real change.
In addition to the 10-month program, OTZMA has launched a new five-month program for 20- to 30-year-old Jewish adults.
With the OTZMA Leadership Scholarship, the program can be experienced starting at $1,000. OTZMA’s next program begins Jan. 22, 2013.
For more information, visit otzma.org.
WUJS Israel — Intern Tel Aviv or Jerusalem
WUJS Israel is a five-month post-college program that offers the ultimate Israel experience for Jewish young adults from around the world. The program is based in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. WUJS Israel allows graduates the opportunity to intern with one of Israel’s leading companies or NGOs, with the additional benefits of a regular Hebrew-language course, weekly field trips, overnight hikes, meetings with Israeli peers and a variety of fun and enriching activities. Participants on WUJS Intern Tel Aviv are required to intern 25 to 30 hours a week.
There are internships available in startups, finance, high-tech, arts and culture, science and medicine as well as museums.
For more information, visit wujsisrael.org.