Hi, my name is Alex Kaufman.I am from Cleveland, Ohio. I decided to take a gap year because my parents and I felt that it would be a good opportunity for me to take some time and learn how to live independently before college. I am doing the core Aardvark program. Currently, I am interning at a digital media advertising company called City Media. I have had the opportunity to talk to clients such as Connor Mcgreggor the UFC fighter which was very exciting as well as working the Facebook page for a NYC company called Sublet4U. I helped work on creating posts for the page as well as designing creative content for the posts. On Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday I go to my internship in the morning and then have classes in the afternoon. The classes I am taking are Ulpan (hebrew) and Middle East Politics. On Tuesday we have a tiyul or field trip to various places throughout the country. I’m most looking forward to continuing to grow and learn how to live independently while making lasting friendships with the other participants. My goal for this year is to be fluent in Hebrew by the end of my time here in Israel and to also visit places that you don’t get to see on the typical tourist vacation to Israel. So far the most memorable experience was going to the sand dunes in the middle of the Negev dessert and being completely alone and just having time to think about my life and then jumping off the top with my friends. My advice to people starting their senior year is to enjoy it and not rush through it. Whatever you do next year you are going to miss being at home with your friends and family so take advantage of the opportunity while you have it!