Spotlight on Students
Student of the Week – Cameron Smook
The first thing you should know about me is that I hate public attention. That being said, Charlee coaxed me into writing this Student of the Week, so here it goes!
Hi, I’m Cameron Smook from Johannesburg, South Africa. It’s day 151 and it’s almost the end.
Unlike many of my Aardvark comrades, I did not attend a Jewish School. In fact, I was so far removed from Judaism that I only had my Bar Mitzvah at the age of 17, whilst on Maccabiah. But, Aardvark helped me see what I was missing out on, mainly the Jewish community and sense of family you gain from the community. Which in all honesty helped me bond quicker with the strangers that quickly became my family.
Arriving on Aardvark, I had no idea what I was going to do as a full grown adult. No idea what I wanted to study or even do with my life. I had a dwindling passion for marketing. Loved trying to teach and especially argue with people. And, I especially loved cooking at home. Luckily for me, after a tour, a bit of mandatory volunteering and whole whack load of luck and work from Idan the Volunteering Coordinator, I landed an internship at Sultana, a vegan restaurant. Now before you ask, I am certainly not a vegan, in fact I’m a hardcore carnivore. However, learning from head chef Harel Zakaim did me a world of good and I’m now going to study at Culinary School. Aardvark truly helped me separate my interests from my passions, and really helped me decide what I want to do with the rest of my life.
We went on many Tiyuls (tours), my favourite was probably Caesarea. One I literally put my blood, sweat and fortunately no tears in to. I was challenged to a race at the ruins of a hippodrome! I ran against my Aardvark brethren in wet conditions. Slipping on the turn, I scraped my arm – blood everywhere. In spite of the injury, I got up and won the race. Ask Charlee for video evidence.
Aardvark has been a blast. Between all the fun and games, cooking, learning and confusing the enemy, I have no idea how it went so quickly!
As the old saying goes, it’s not over until the fat lady sings, and the fat lady will sing in the Big Apple soon when all the Plus Program students go to America on the 11th of this month to tour and work at American Summer Camps. What an exciting end to an exciting program!