gap year in israel

Hello, my name is Jared Suffet. I am from the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. I was born in the city of Chicago and for three years of my life, I lived there just a block away from Wrigley Field, before moving to Northbrook. I attended Jewish after school programming until grade 8. I learned most of my information about Israel and Judaism in my World Religions class, at Glenbrook North High School. During high school, I volunteered with a local Temple to help survivors of Tornados in Washington and Oklahoma. After graduating high school, I decided to take a Gap Year with Aardvark.

I have been living in Jerusalem this semester, and next semester I am going to be living in the neighbourhood of Florentine in Tel Aviv. I am taking 5 classes all for college credit, and I am struggling a bit with Hebrew, but I will prevail!!! My internship at the Jerusalem Aquarium has definitely been helping with the Hebrew, and the Israeli staff that work at the Aquarium have become good friends. They invite us over for dinners and to meet up after work. They have truly made me feel at home here and helped make my internship experience a memorable one.

I enjoy being able to walk around Jerusalem in my own time and learn about the culture. I have been learning how to cook, especially soups (since it’s now winter in Jerusalem). I’m excited to cook for my family when I return home for Winter Break.

Overall, I am loving my experience on Aardvark Jerusalem. I am loving my internship at the Jerusalem Aquarium. I am making tons of new friends and learning about Israeli culture through my classes and experiences. I am becoming more and more independent every day.

Though I have only been here for three months, I already feel at home, partly because I know Israel is my home and I am excited about what the rest of the year has to offer. I hope that people get to have this experience for years to come, and all I can say is Thank You Aardvark!!!