Israel Study, the Aardvark Way

April 27, 2012

Source: The New Jersey Jewish Standard


Aardvark Israel, is a pluralistic nine-month program now completing its second year. The program is affiliated with American Jewish University in Los Angeles. It offers college credits and weekly trips around the country. Eighty Aardvark participants are divided into two groups, each spending half the program based in the South Tel Aviv neighborhood of Florentine, and the other half of the time in the southern Jerusalem neighborhood of Katamon.

Aardvark Israel Gap Year and Semester students are expected to contribute to Israeli society as part of their responsibilities as participants on the program. 12-16 hours per week are dedicated to internships and/or community service and volunteering projects. Students are given a wide range of choices and are placed at sites that match their interests and skills.


Through a partnership with the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, Aardvark Israel participants may earn up to a full year of college credit while on the year program or up to 15 credits per semester for each semester a students is enrolled. Those students who choose to register for credit and successfully complete the course requirements may able to request to transfer their credit to their desired university following their semester/year in Israel.


Course offerings include Hebrew language instruction and a variety of Jewish and Zionist themed subjects. In addition, a small sampling of typical college freshman courses is offered. The goal of the academic program is to inspire students and actively engage them in exploration of their Jewish and Zionist beliefs. Course offerings are those that have been proven to be of interest and relevance to typical gap year and study abroad participants.


In addition to the core program, Aardvark Israel Gap Year and Semester Programs offer add-on features for an additional fee. These elective programs create a framework that taps into the talents and passions of the students. The programming combines instruction with exposure to accomplished local professionals. Through hands-on workshops, volunteering, seminars, academic courses, field trips, and interactions with local experts, students benefit from enrichment in their area of interest. Creating immersion opportunities in the subjects that are most interesting to the student increases their sense of identification and appreciation for Israeli society and modern Israel.


Read more at the Aardvark Israel website.

Updated: Apr. 30, 2012