Ynet: American Jews teach Israeli kids English

Ynet: American Jews teach Israeli kids English

March 6, 2012

Young adults from US Jewish communities teach their mother tongue in Israeli schools while learning about State of Israel, strengthening bond between world Jews.
Petah Tikva's Yad Lebanim elementary school acts under the banner of excellence and courtesy and emphasizes these issues among its students. In addition, the school has chosen to break the language barrier by having native English speakers teach its students English.
 
These studies were made possible thanks to the Masa project, which brings young Americans to Israel to voluntarily teach English in schools across the country.
 
Some 70 young Americans have arrived in Israel for this purpose and will stay in the country for a year.
 
Masa is a joint project of the government and the Jewish Agency together with the Education Ministry.
 
According to Jewish Agency Deputy Chairman Rani Trainin, the Masa project brings thousands of young adults from Jewish communities to Israel for a period of voluntary work.
 
"Many Masa participants make a significant contribution to education in Israel by teaching English and other subjects, thereby helping increase the level of education in the country while strengthening the interrelation between Israeli youth and Diaspora youth and the partnership between the State of Israel and the world's Jewry."
 

Young Jews Enjoy an Expanded Israel Experience

Young Jews Enjoy an Expanded Israel Experience

Young Jews Enjoy an Expanded Israel Experience

February 22, 2012

As OTZMA kicks off its 27th year, young Jews seeking to join Jewish Federations’ premier Israel experience program can now embark on a five-month journey of leadership and service throughout the Jewish state.
This new OTZMA program will offer an additional experience to the signature 10-month OTZMA program, in which young Jewish adults, ages 20-30, can live in Israel, learn Hebrew and volunteer in small communities in partnership with their local Jewish Federations.
 
“By expanding our program options, OTZMA is able to provide a greater link between the North American Jewish community and Israel,” said Michele Sackheim Wein, chair of OTZMA. “We are excited to bring even more young Jews to Israel to enhance their leadership skills, explore their personal Jewish identities, travel the country and gain a deep understanding of Israel and the North American Jewish community.”
 
This year’s OTZMA program will also introduce new ways for young Jews to get involved in Jewish Federations. Participants will maintain a relationship with their Federation’s Young Adult Department (YAD) from their first interview to their return home, with extensive interaction in between. By helping to establish a connection between participants and their local YADs, OTZMA alumni will find a natural home within their Federation upon their return.
 
OTZMA participants will also visit programs and sites of Jewish Federation partner agencies, like the Jewish Agency for Israel and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and learn more about Federation’s work throughout Israel. OTZMA will offer optional internship programs for returning participants at their local Federations. 
 
“Our OTZMA participants return home with such a passion for Israel and a love for the Jewish people,” said Beth Mann, associate vice president of JFNA. “With these new ways of connecting to their communities, Jewish Federations have an unprecedented opportunity to harness that excitement by mentoring and developing these young leaders.”
 
OTZMA has been helping develop young leaders for years. Since its inception in 1986, more than 60 percent of alumni have served as professionals or volunteers in the Jewish community after returning home.
 
Plia Cohn is an OTZMA alumna who is now the Israel Engagement Coordinator at the Jewish Federation of St. Louis. “I couldn’t have predicted the impact of my decision to participate on OTZMA, both personally and professionally,” she said. “Through the lens of OTZMA, the place of Israel within my Jewish identity was strengthened in a very special way. As a parent and a professional, I have a passion for Israel that I share with my family, colleagues and community, and that passion was sparked by my OTZMA experience.”
 
The program also develops a connection to Israel and the Jewish Federation world. Ninety-six percent of OTZMA alumni call themselves supporters of Israel, while nearly 60 percent have donated to Jewish Federation.
 
“OTZMA has long been a premier Israel service experience for young Jews seeking to enhance their leadership skills, but this year OTZMA participants will have even more opportunities to connect our community,” said Jerry Silverman, president and CEO of The Jewish Federations. “OTZMA is a vital part of our effort to engage the next generation, offering an incredible opportunity to actually see and feel the powerful impact of Jewish Federations."
 

Videos

Hear participants talk about their daily life, take a virtual tour of your favorite program, and watch your semester of year in Israel unfold in front of you

Israel Teaching Fellows - Ma'ase Olam

Why people are quitting their jobs to teach in Israel

<div class="masa-blog-title">Why people are quitting their jobs to teach in Israel</div>

By Rachel Sales, Masa Israel Journey Director of Alumni and Public Relations
 
We’ve been seeing a similar trend for a while–young people graduate from college and can’t find jobs. They spend a few months tinkering with commas on their resumes, writing reverential emails to potential employers, and when all else fails, panicking. Finally, they make the decision to do something more productive for their professional development.
 

Videos

Hear participants talk about their daily life, take a virtual tour of your favorite program, and watch your semester of year in Israel unfold in front of you

Masa Israel Alumni Community

Visiting Rehovot

<div class="masa-blog-title">Visiting Rehovot</div>

By Eric Eingold, Ma'ase Olam North American Manager
 
After having been in Israel for a whirlwind two weeks on a Birthright tour, I was excited to finally get to work.
 

Discovering Haifa's Beauty, Diversity and Genuine Coexistence

<div class="masa-blog-title">Discovering Haifa's Beauty, Diversity and Genuine Coexistence</div>

By Billie Hirsch, OTZMA 
 
Shalom from Haifa! My name is Billie Hirsch, and I am a participant of OTZMA, a ten-month leadership development and volunteer-oriented program sponsored by the Jewish Federations of North America as well as CJP.
 
Since late August of last year, I have been awarded the bragging rights of calling Israel my current home.
 

Times of Israel: Why people are quitting their jobs to teach in Israel

Times of Israel: Why people are quitting their jobs to teach in Israel

February 9, 2012

We’ve been seeing a similar trend for a while–young people graduate from college and can’t find jobs. They spend a few months tinkering with commas on their resumes, writing reverential emails to potential employers, and when all else fails, panicking.
Finally, they make the decision to do something more productive for their professional development. For example: an internship–-and better yet, one that’s abroad because they’ve heard that international professional experience is an excellent addition to their resumes. Of course, if they’re lucky enough, they learn that these opportunities exist in Israel and that they can get funding to make it feasible.
 
Fast-forward five to 12 months, and they’re back home with sparking resumes, work experience in the Middle East (!), and quickly land the jobs they want. They look back, thankful that their experience helped them with their careers–and gave them a chance to be young and beautiful in Tel Aviv (or Jerusalem).
 

Masa Alumni Hebrew Conversation Club

Masa Alumni Hebrew Conversation Club

February 29, 2012 - 19:30  -  February 29, 2012 - 21:00

Moishe House DUMBOBrooklyn, NY  -  United States

The Masa Israel Alumni Culture Club and the Moishe House Dumbo invite you to share in an evening of Hebrew conversation and Israeli cuisine! 
If you are interested in practicing your language skills in an informal setting while delighting in kosher Middle Eastern fare come join us for our first Ivrit meet-up.  Food and drink will be served, and (Hebrew) dialogue encouraged.  
 
 
Once you register, you will receive the Moishe House Dumbo’s address by email. If you have any questions, please contact Masa Israel’s Director of Alumni Rachel Trager Sales at racheltr@masaisrael.org.

Live Your TLV in NYC – Alumni Kickoff Party

Live Your TLV in NYC – Alumni Kickoff Party

February 16, 2012 - 21:00  -  February 17, 2012 (All day)

113 LudlowNew York, NY  -  United States

Join fellow alumni from the NYC area to dance, drink responsibly, enjoy Israeli themes, and reconnect (or make new connections) with friends from your Masa Israel experience.
There are more events to come and this is a great way to start it all off. $6 in advance/$8 at the door. Your ticket includes a free drink!