Spotlight on Students
Student of the Week – Yitzi Zolty
My name is Yitzi Zolty and I’m from Atlanta, Georgia!
Two weeks ago, I left home for nine months in order to embark on the biggest journey of my life so far. Choosing a program was far from easy but I settled on Aardvark Israel. I wanted to come to Israel and learn about the country, travel from the Golan Heights down to Eilat, from the Dead Sea across to the Mediterranean. I wanted to experience the county through a lens that would allow me to learn the undiluted reality, not one that was fed to me. I knew Aardvark Israel was the right choice because my sister had participated a few years earlier, and she constantly complains how jealous she is that I get to go now for a year.
After just two weeks, I can say two things. One, I need a nap. And two, I can’t wait to do “two weeks” another 17 times. We have already traveled far north to the Kinneret, and soon will embark with Selah to Tzfat to learn about the color and material of Tichelet. With the Selah Track, we take time from our week to dive into the link between our Judaism and the State of Israel. After all, this land has been desired and inhabited by the Jews for thousands of years.
When we are not on Selah, we are at our individual internships. I managed to get my first choice, and I will be spending two days a week for the rest of the semester interning for an archaeological dig on Mount Scopus with another student from the program. I wanted this internship because archaeology is the direct intersection between our religious history and our geopolitical history. There is no better proof of our inhabitance of Israel than to dig up a coin from hundreds—if not thousands of years ago— from a Jewish government. And, it just so happens that on our first day we did find a coin. Sifting through the topsoil may be hard work, but it is rewarding to see the remains of our people’s past.
I don’t know what the next “17 more times” holds for me, but if the first two weeks is any indicator, it is going to be something good!