My name is Pandora Yadgaroff and I’m from London, England. I decided to take a gap year as I knew that this was the only time in my life. I felt that I will be fully free from the pressures of adulthood and could take a year to enjoy such a beautiful country that means so much to me, with people who have become some of my best friends.
One thing that really drew me to Aardvark was the possibility of doing an internship, which is different to many other gap year programs. Also, I was interested in taking academic classes in order to keep my brain working for when I go to university in September! Luckily, these two things became intrinsically linked as I am volunteering with my Middle Eastern politics professor, as well as the Psychology professor, helping them on a research project. I plan to study international relations next year at university, therefore such an experience has been invaluable to me. In addition, I volunteer at a soldier center twice a week, helping the manager run the place whilst socializing with the soldiers. This, along with my Ulpan classes, has allowed me to improve my Hebrew whilst having fun.
I don’t know where to start for the highlight of my experience. Hiking in the Negev, Purim in Tel Aviv and touring Caesarea have definitely been amazing experiences, but my absolute highlight has been forming bonds with people from all over the world that will last far past the too soon ending of my trip.