Gonzalo E. – Hillel Latin America, Winter 2019
“I first came to Israel with Bria, then I volunteered at Hillel Córdoba, and there was where I heard about Onward Israel. Many people told me about this program and how they enjoyed it. So, I decided to come! I’m enjoying every day: I’m loving involving interning in startup nation withh Taranis. The high-tech course at Holon Institute of Technology is awesome! Is making me think and discover a lot. I am signing up for every possible extra activity, I just want to get the best out of every second here: Hatzad Hasheni classes with Ben-Tasgal (which I will keep studying), Hebrew classes, company visits… and the Tel Aviv Marathon! I have been practicing running for 3 years, and when Hillel confirmed me that I was coming to Israel again, I looked for the running events that were taking place here and didn’t doubt to signing up for this one. The marathon was amazing, the atmosphere was awesome, lots of people cheering, fantastic views, a lot of music, everybody had a blast!
Now, two weeks away from the end of the program, I know I will come back to Israel, hopefully in a year (after I get my economics degree at Córdoba), and I want to stay for a longer time: working and studying.”
Josh R. – Columbus, Summer 2019
My Onward Israel experience surpassed all my expectations. I made lifelong friends while gaining valuable work experience in an incredible city. Tel Aviv felt like home for me and strengthened my connection to Judaism. I feel inspired to get more involved on campus with both Israeli and Jewish clubs and organizations. Life in Tel Aviv taught me to see the world through a new lens. I hope I can bring back what I learned to Columbus and Ohio State. Whether it was spending late nights hanging with friends at the malabia, or feeling accomplished after completing projects at work, this summer will stick with me forever.
Peter Z. – Cleveland, Summer 2019
I study computer science and linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. My internship is at a company called VoiceItt. The aim of the company is to provide accurate voice recognition software for people with speech impediments. I work as part of the algorithms team, and currently, I’m working on improving the prediction algorithm so we can integrate the software with Alexa. I am loving my time working at this company. Since it’s a startup with less than 20 people, I get to work very closely with everyone and found that I fit well on the team. I know that the work I’m doing is vital to the company’s success and that makes me feel even more valued.
Sarah B. – Northern New Jersey, Summer 2019
This summer I interned at Ichilov Hospital’s clinical microbiology lab. Apart from learning so much more than a classroom has to offer, I had the opportunity to participate in ongoing research on antibiotic resistance. My main job was DNA amplification, creating copies of DNA samples. My coworkers were very generous in helping me understand the research and answering my questions about microbiology. This internship has given me a greater appreciation for what I’m studying as well as a wider perspective on the subjects of microbiology and genetics.
Lily A. – Government & Politics, Summer 2019
“Working at one of the most prestigious organizations in Israel, that is, working to fight government corruption is such an amazing experience that I would not have gotten if it weren’t for Onward and the connections that Onward has. I have learned so much in half of my time here and I’m so excited to see what more the Movement for Quality Government can give me and what I can give to the organization. I also feel like everyone at this organization respects me despite the fact that I am don’t live in this country, that I am not a voting resident, that I am 19 years old. And it’s truly an experience of a lifetime and I’m beyond stoked to see what else is to come.”
Rebecca L. – Sports, Hospitality & Management, Summer 2019
” Hi everyone! I’m interning at Any.do, a start-up app company that aims to help its users stay organized and productive through different features like a to-do list, smart grocery list, calendar, and more. When applying to Onward, I wanted to gain valuable work experience in a field that genuinely interests me but I wasn’t sure if I would get to do exactly what I wanted. This internship has exceeded my expectations! I spend my time creating new content, answering customers, and contributing to the release of new features. I have felt welcomed by my team since I got here as they took the time to train me, teach me, and get to know me. In addition, I’m proud of the work that I have done as it is not merely busywork, but real work that helps the company achieve its goals. This internship has reaffirmed what I want to study and pursue after graduation and I have learned so much from this experience. I’m really grateful to have had this amazing opportunity!”
Kirby G. – Arts & Culture, Summer 2019
Shalom! My name is Kirby and I’m interning at the World Union for Progressive Judaism, the international umbrella of Progressive and Reform Judaism. I’m a native of Minneapolis, Minnesota and a rising sophomore at Colgate University in Upstate New York. At my internship, much of my work is related to media writing, where I edit and produce content to be published by the organization. I’m currently working on a reflection of my experience at Women of the Wall, an in-depth story about the experiences of women rabbis around the world and looking forward to a social action tour of the Knesset this week. The work I do pairs my passion for social justice and my experience in journalism with the opportunity for exploration of my own Jewish identity!
Sarah R. – Social Justice & Community Services, Summer 2019
“Haifa is a beautiful, unique city. I love that when I walk down the street I might hear people speaking Hebrew, Arabic, English, Russian, or Tigrigna. I love that in one weekend I can watch a Jewish couple break glass under a chupa and see the fireworks and neighborhood decorations of an Arab wedding. I love that such a geographically small place houses such incredible diversity. And wow do I love that there is public transportation on Shabbat. While all of these things contribute to what makes Haifa, Haifa, they shouldn’t be used as a justification for the city to be stagnant. The beautiful things and the hard things both need to be acknowledged. We must acknowledge the inequity and celebrate the diversity. That is how Haifa will become a city that is not only mixed in name, but mixed in practice.”