Spotlight on Students
Student of the Week – Staci Pinkoowitz
“Hi! My name is Staci Pinkowitz, and I’m from the small town of Sharon, Massachusetts, right in-between Boston and Providence. After four years of high school and involvement with my local Jewish youth group I was pretty sold on doing a gap year abroad in my favorite country, Israel. I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do with my year except that I wanted the opportunity to be able to make independent choices. I researched and found Aardvark. Living on my own and having the chance to make this year anything I want has been absolutely incredible. I’ve learned important life lessons such as the struggles of budgeting, healthy eating (that milkshake place down the street is going to be a real challenge) and actually waking up to alarms. However, aside from the more logistical stuff I’ve matured a lot and feel I understand now more than ever how to handle myself in social situations. Best of all, I have become friends with people who I am sure will stay with me for life. Thanks Aardvark!
Last semester I was an intern at the World Zionist Organization Department for Activities in Israel and Countering Anti-Semitism in Jerusalem. My daily tasks involved keeping the organization’s Twitter up to date, logging global Anti-Semitic incidents on the website and helping with English translation around the office. Beyond that, there were several trips to Har Herzl to meet with world leaders, the 37th World Zionist Congress in October, and many trips to the main JNF building and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to meet with important officials within Israel.
My experience was amazing – I learned not only how to conduct myself in a professional environment and sharpen my skill set, but I was also able to understand more than ever how and why the State of Israel is a necessary, complex, and miraculous place. I am so excited to continue my Aardvark adventure in Tel Aviv. This city is different from any other place that I’ve been to and I am hyped beyond belief to explore it and to become a part of its amazing, unique, and shining community. Although I miss Jerusalem I know that this move will help me to become a more wholesome, mature, and experienced person. Aardvark rocks!”