• Chicago

    Onward Israel Chicago is a community based program that offers participants the opportunity to live and work in Israel while developing valuable career skills, exploring Israeli culture and society, and building a personal connection to Israel.



    Summer 2020 programs will be opening in mid-November! Click here for to be notified when you can apply.

    This tailor-made internship program places you in an internship based on your skills, interests and future plans, and provides opportunities to travel throughout Israel and experience Israeli culture and society firsthand.

    This Onward Israel program is operated through a partnership between the Beacon and Shapira Foundations, Masa Israel Journey, the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, and other leading philanthropists. It is organized by Israel Experience

    Participants on Onward Israel programs that are run in partnership with Masa may return to Israel on long-term Masa programs after Onward Israel. They may also be eligible for additional scholarships from Masa to help fund their participation, although the size of that scholarship may be influenced by prior participation on Onward Israel. For details please contact Masa Israel Journey directly.

    Important Information

    TBD – Tracks in Tel Aviv & Jerusalem

    Program Cost

    Program fee includes housing, insurance, modest food stipend, ground transportation and organized programming costs.

    Additionally, all participants are required to submit a $300 credit card authorization as a participation and security deposit. All deposits will be refunded at the conclusion of the program pending good standing.

    All participants are responsible for arranging their own flights. Flights are not included in the cost of the program.

    The actual cost of the Onward Israel program is much higher, and is subsidized up to 70% by Onward Israel, private donors, and local Jewish communities and institutions.

    Participants in programs which are part of the Onward/Masa partnership may be eligible for additional scholarships. For more information call Onward Israel or your local partner professional.

    Acceptance Criteria

    This program is open to college students from Illinois, and/or attending school in Illinois or at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    Participants must be between 18-25 years of age, and have not spent 3 or more months in Israel on an organized program post- high school (including semester abroad, gap year, or any other MASA or Onward Israel program). Preference will be given to students who will be returning to campus for at least one semester following the conclusion of the Onward Israel program.

    Previous participation in Taglit- Birthright Israel is encouraged for eligible applicants.

    Graduating seniors are not eligible.

    Participants live in apartments in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. The number of participants per room is dependent on the size of the accommodations and the number of participants on the program. Participants should be prepared to share a room with at least one other same-gendered participant.

    While meeting common standards, Onward Israel housing differs by program and even within a program. To learn more about this and other Onward Israel housing details, please visit our housing FAQ.

    Sample Internships

    Social Media and outreach internship with local NGO or non-profit
    Business Development internship with social media start-up
    Finance intern for an investment company
    Event coordination and promotion intern for management company
    Medical internship with a hospital
    Engineering internship with a university

    For More Information

    Melissa Dworkin, iec@juf.org

    Organizations That Make This Program Possible