How to navigate your university’s study abroad policy

If you're thinking about studying abroad this coming Spring, why not use free time you have this summer to begin doing your research? Once you start school again in the Fall, deadlines will come up faster than you think. So, instead of cramming it all in then, follow some necessary steps this summer to lay the groundwork for your semester abroad.
 
Choose your location
"Focus on what's good for you personally and academically," says Dr. Janet Alperstein, Director of Academic Affairs at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Rothberg International School. "You might be a history major, but have interests that extend beyond that.  By choosing a city that offers a wide variety of options – like Jerusalem – you can continue on your course of study while pursuing other interests, like learning Hebrew or Arabic, archeology, business, dance, and more."
 
Figure out your school's study abroad policy
Don’t know your university's policy on studying in Israel?  Check it out in the Israel on Campus Coalition's report Study Abroad in Israel: University Policies. If your school isn't listed, look at similar schools' policies, contact the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC), or Masa Israel Journey Director of Academic Affairs Daniel Schuval at danielsc@masaisrael.org.
 
Choose a program that's right for you
"Israeli universities have come a long way and now offer tons of specific course offerings," says Andrea Sorin from the ICC.  "For example, if you want to study engineering, you can go the Technion.  If you're interested in environmental studies, you can check out Ben Gurion University.  There are a lot of options, so most students will be able to find something that fits into their course of study." Search the course offerings at each university to see if they have classes you are interested in taking.
 
Speak to program alumni
Contact your study abroad advisor for the contact information of people who recently took part in your study abroad program in Israel. Alumni will be able to tell you what it's really like and how you should best prepare for your year or semester abroad. If no one from your school recently went to Israel, contact the study abroad program directly for an alum to speak with.
 
Understand your academic requirements
Look over your general education and major requirements to see what you need to graduate. Set up a time to meet with your academic advisor once you're back on campus (If you are close to your campus over the summer, they may even be able to meet with you now so you can avoid the fall rush. Find out which school/major requirements you still have to fulfill and whether or not you can fulfill any of them while studying abroad.
 
Contact Masa Israel Journey if you have questions. Program advisors are standing by to answer any of your questions and to help you connect with the Israeli university that best suits your academic and personal interests. Email us at masany@masaisrael.org with any questions you might have.
 

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