gap year in israel

Check out our social media to see what our students have been up to this past week!

Hey, my name is Noam Aharon and I’m from the most boring place on earth, Fair Lawn, New Jersey. Usually, I’d think it’d be really cool to live next to a river, except that in mine you’d get sick from all the toxic waste in it. My family is a bit more interesting though. My Dad is Israeli and my Mom is from Costa Rica, so my household usually features someone screaming in the background with the smell of tortillas wafting through the air. I have an older sister who just finished college, and a younger brother in High School. They’re my best friends.

Because I had such a strong connection to Israel through my dad and his family, I always planned to come here for a gap year. Most of my friends and kids from my community went to Yeshivas and Seminaries, but I’ve always wanted to do something different. I wished to live independently in Israel and meet new people outside of my Modern-Orthodox community. I am lucky to say that I have met the most interesting and genuine people on this program and I’m super glad I made this choice.

I am currently interning at Yad Vashem’s international relations department. The department is responsible for all the donations the museum receives and it honors the donors. When donors come, I often photograph their tours to make an album of their visit. I also help around the offices by doing a lot of scanning, binding and stuffing envelopes, the classic intern stuff. The most common question people asking me about my work is “Isn’t that so depressing?” While these people take their work very seriously, it’s a really lively and exciting environment. I’ll never forget scanning for the French department while people are shouting at each other and cracking jokes in a language I don’t understand.

I am currently living in Jerusalem for the semester, and I will be backpacking through Europe for three months next semester. I also need to get something off my chest: I love Tekashi 6ix9ine’s music. I understand if you stopped reading at this point but I just had to say it.

I will dearly miss this program and all the friends I’ve made on it, and I’m looking forward to my future adventures. #treyway