• Chicago

    Live and work in Tel Aviv this summer! Experience life as a local with Chicago Onward Israel. Participants are matched with high-level, competitive internships in their fields of study that offer real world experience in unique fields.

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    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.

    Intern four to five days a week alongside Israeli peers and immerse yourself in contemporary Israeli society. Experience Israel through Onward Israel’s day trips, overnights and seminars. In your free time, explore Israel’s amazing restaurants, beaches, and nightlife with a cohort of other young adults.

    *Please visit our Covid-19 Response for the most up to date information regarding vaccination requirements and entry into Israel.*

    This Onward Israel – Masa program is operated through a partnership between the Beacon and Shapira Foundations and other leading philanthropists, the Birthright Israel Foundation, the Government of Israel, Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago, and Masa Israel Journey. It is organized by Israel Experience. For more information about participating in a longer term Masa program after Onward Israel and the potential impact of participating in Onward Israel on future Masa grants view our FAQ here.

    Important Information

    Admission is rolling. Applications will close in the beginning of March or earlier if the program fills. Apply now!

    Dates
    Track 1: June 7 – August 1, 2023
    Applications for this track have closed

    Track 2: June 14 – August 8, 2023
    Applications for this track have closed

    Track 3: June 21 – August 15, 2023

     

    Participants MUST be available to participate for the entire length of the program.

    If for public health or security related reasons the program cannot take place in Israel, Onward Israel will make efforts to conduct the program remotely. Click here to review our FAQ, including information on remote programs regarding internships, programming and more.

    Program Cost
    $800*

    The program cost includes housing, educational program, program staff, medical insurance, partial laundry provisions, and ground transportation within the city of residence. In addition, participants will be required to submit a $400 security deposit in via credit card hold. Deposits will be refunded at the end of the program pending good standing. Charges will not be made if participants complete the program in good standing.

    All participants are responsible for the cost and arrangement of their own flights and spending money upon arrival in Israel (including for food). Participants should not purchase flights until approximately one month before the program begins and are encouraged to purchase flights with a good refund policy or flight insurance. Onward Israel is not responsible for the cost of flights should the program be cancelled or shifted to be remote. Note, participants will be told approximately a month or two before the program begins their expected arrival and departure times.

    Applicants participating in Birthright Israel trips ahead of an Onward Israel program must join their group on the first day of their Onward Israel program. Applicants will be responsible for their own accommodations if there is a gap between Birthright Israel and Onward Israel programs.

    The actual cost of the Onward Israel program is much higher, and is subsidized up to 70% by Birthright Israel and the Chicago Jewish community through the Jewish United Fund of Chicago.

    Masa-eligible participants in programs which are part of the Onward/Masa partnership may qualify for additional scholarships. For more information, contact 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.
    – Applicants between 19-30 years old and not currently enrolled in high school
    – Be Jewish (please refer to our FAQ for more information)
    – Applicants must NOT have spent 3 or more consecutive months in Israel after high school (this includes semester abroad, gap year, or any other MASA or Onward Israel program)
    –  Must meet Masa Israel Journey Eligibility criteria (click here to review), including not having received Masa funding towards participation on a previous program. Note, Alumni of Onward Israel and Masa Israel Journey programs are typically not eligible to participate on a second Onward Israel program. In a small number of cases it might be possible for alumni of both initiatives and those who do not meet Masa Israel Journey criteria to participate (individuals can check with Onward Israel staff on a case by case basis), but program subsidies will be significantly lower and therefore the program fee will be higher.
    – Fluent in English
    – Have a valid Passport (passports must be valid for at least 6 months after the program end date)
    – Previous participation in Birthright Israel is encouraged but not required

    – Graduating seniors are not eligible.
    -Onward Israel alumni are not eligible for Birthright Israel trips. If you wish to participate in a 7- or 10-day Birthright Israel trip, consider participating in a Birthright Israel trip prior to an Onward Israel program.

    Please click here to review the application process. Note: there could be slight differences between programs.

    Accommodations
    Apartment, hostel, hotel, or dorm-style housing in Tel Aviv.

    The number of participants to an apartment or room is dependent on the size of the accommodations and number of participants on the program. Though Onward Israel housing can vary from program to program, it generally meets basic Onward Israel standards. 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
    -Event coordination and promotion intern for management company
    -Public Relations internship with a museum
    Not sure what type of internship you are looking for or unsure if you can find it in Israel? Our internship coordinators work one-on-one with each participant!

    Applicants interested in internships in the fields of Engineering, STEM, Green Energy, Computer Science, Finance, Law and Medicine please click here for some important information regarding placements:

    For More Information
    Please contact onwardisrael@juf.org


    Organizations That Make This Program Possible

    Testimonials

    "Onward is an optimal choice for anyone looking to gain hands on experience in their professional field of interest; while simultaneously exploring a new and exciting culture with likeminded individuals. There is no other program perfectly catered to students who are looking to get ahead in their careers and have a breathtaking abroad experience at the same time. It is a once in a lifetime adventure." - Jay, Chicago Summer 2022

    “Onward was an incredible opportunity to not only build upon my Jewish identity, but was a perfect step into the career world. Being able to simultaneously immerse myself in a beautiful culture and learn more about my future career paths was the most amazing way to spend a summer. The staff was there every step of the way to make sure I got the most out of my experience, yet I also felt incredibly independent.” - Rachel, Chicago Summer 2022