The Holidays in Israel

<div class="masa-blog-title">The Holidays in Israel</div>

By Chloe Newman, Masa Israel Teaching Fellow in Ashdod


While this holiday season didn’t resemble the traditions of my youth, it was still very special for me. With my new friends and communities here in Israel, I took part in multi-cultural celebrations across the country. The saying here goes that Israelis will take any excuse to celebrate, eat, drink, and be merry with the ones they love...and especially without the bombardment of superficial, commercial holiday stresses, why not?



6 things Kim Kardashian should do in Tel Aviv

USA TODAY: The changing culture of the 'Israeli internship'

USA TODAY: The changing culture of the 'Israeli internship'

USA TODAY: The changing culture of the 'Israeli internship'

January 9, 2015

By Adam Gerstenfeld


"Institutions like Masa Israel and Israel Experience have quickly sprouted up across the country looking to capitalize on this niche field.

Adi Barel, director of career development programs for Masa Israel, says the typical Israeli student sees the internship as another step in the advancement process of their chosen career path. American students, on the other hand, might use an internship to explore a number of potential job markets.


'Traditionally, there are a few fields – law, medicine, psychology, accounting, maybe a few others – in which [Israeli] students must do a stage apprenticeship upon graduating from university,' says Barel, 'Otherwise, Israeli culture was not that familiar with internships until five or six years ago.'"


Read the whole article on USA TODAY's website

Time to Re-Lod!

<div class="masa-blog-title">Time to Re-Lod!</div>

First stop on our tour: some really old ruins in Lod! Circa 1000 years ago I think?


By Rebecca Taranto, Israel Way: Eilat Hotel Experience Intern 


Did I mean to say “re-load” instead of "Re-Lod?" No, I did not! Lod (pronounced “load”) is a city in Israel and Re-Lod is the name of a project whose mission is to revitalize the city through the power of the people.


How to Get (Back) to Israel in 3 Easy Steps: Step 2

<div class="masa-blog-title">How to Get (Back) to Israel in 3 Easy Steps: Step 2</div>

By Allie Bernstein, Career Israel Intern


This is Part 2 of a three-part blog series. To read Part 1, click here


Did you know that you – yes, you! – can actually make your dream of spending months in Israel a reality?



Morgan Kaczor

Morgan Kaczor

West Coast Regional Director

What Does it Really Mean to be a Jewish Leader?

Applications Open for Fifth Cohort of Masa Israel Teaching Fellows

Applications Open for Fifth Cohort of Masa Israel Teaching Fellows

Applications Open for Fifth Cohort of Masa Israel Teaching Fellows

December 22, 2014

New York, NY – Applications for the 2015-2016 Masa Israel Teaching Fellows are officially open. For the program’s fifth cohort, Masa Israel Journey will select 200 outstanding Jewish college graduates to teach English in Israel’s periphery and, for the first time ever, in Israeli youth villages for immigrant and at-risk youth.

Masa Israel Teaching Fellows is a joint initiative of Israel’s Ministry of Education, Masa Israel Journey, and the Jewish Agency for Israel. The 10-month service-learning fellowship was created to address the achievement gap in Israel’s education system. As Israel’s classrooms are overcrowded and less than 25% of Israeli English teachers speak English at a native level, Masa Israel Teaching Fellows work as teachers’ aides in underserved classrooms, where they help reduce class sizes and improve English learning outcomes for Israeli students.


Since its inaugural session in 2011-2012, 535 Jewish young adults from the United States, Canada, England and Australia have served as Masa Israel Teaching Fellows. The Fellowship has expanded from five cities to nine cities in Israel’s periphery: Ashdod, Be’er Sheva, Netanya, Petach Tikvah, Rishon Lezion, Rehovot, Ramle and Lod.


“It’s more than just teaching,” explains Debbie Stone, Assistant Director of The Brody Jewish Center, Hillel at University of Virginia, and 2013-2014 Masa Israel Teaching Fellow alum. “You learn so much more about yourself and how resourceful you can be. You find the most creative ways to communicate something as simple as ‘take out your notebook’” she said.


Many Masa Israel Teaching Fellows return to their home countries to take on leadership roles in their local Jewish communities. Some, like Debbie, even pursue careers as Jewish professionals in Hillels, youth movements, and Jewish Federations, as well as other Jewish organizations across the country.


“Masa Israel Teaching Fellows was incredible,” says Seth Reder, Director of Jewish Student Life at Central Florida Hillel, and 2013-2014 Masa Israel Teaching Fellow alum. “The opportunities that it provided and the doors that it opened – meeting Israelis and being immersed in Israel – really helped me see the Jewish world outside of the world I had known.”


And, immersed in Israel, they are: Masa Israel Teaching Fellows quickly become integral parts of the communities in which they work, live and volunteer. As Brittany Walter, Israel Engagement Coordinator at Central Florida Hillel notes, Petach Tikvah’s local radio station made an announcement as soon as she and the rest of the 2013-2014 Masa Israel Teaching Fellows arrived in town. “We felt really loved, in our apartment building, the streets, the shuk – everywhere,” she remembers.


To apply for Masa Israel Teaching Fellows, visit: Due to incredibly increased interest, the application deadline has been extended to March 1, 2015. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.


Nominations from community members are also encouraged at


For more information, contact Allison Green, Masa Israel Journey, North America’s Marketing and Communication Coordinator at (212) 339-6976 or




Masa Israel Journey is a project of the Government of Israel and the Jewish Agency for Israel and is made possible through the generous contributions of the Jewish Federations of North America and Keren Hayesod-UIA. 


Visit for more information

Osnat Spiegel

Osnat Spiegel

Director of Alumni & Community Engagement

Tovah Goodman

Tovah Goodman

Engagement Associate, Israel Initiatives, Chicago

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