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Hebrew University of Jerusalem

About

Consistently ranked as one of the Top 100 universities in the world, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem offers world class education for university or students interested in broadening their horizons while receiving outstanding theoretical and practical instruction. Students at the Rothberg International School have the chance to study together with both local students from diverse backgrounds and international students from over 70 countries around the world. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is comprised of higher learning and research, and is a scientific hub of international importance. Don't hesitate, and sign up to study at one of the most prestigious schools of the world!

Reviews

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Sinyu
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Place where I looked back to my life

I always wanted to visit Israel for several reasons. I had a chance to come as exchange student. My first arrival wasn't as easy as expected, but soon, after 2~3 weeks everything went fine. People here are very interactive, rather than looking at the phone, they like to communicate with each others. In academic life also, lots of sharing their thoughs and debating. People are very straight forward and friendly. I actually extended one more semester to stay. Having some relaxing time, and oraganizing my life, and finding my further direction.

Pros
  • People are interactive.
  • Lots of program for exchange student in Rothberg International school.
  • Many place to travel.
Cons
  • No buses on shabbat..
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Harry
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

A home base in the world's most complex city

I went to Jerusalem to study one thing and everything––that is, to study Jerusalem, where the ancient and the modern are bound together, where many peoples and histories have a home. Hebrew University gave *me* a home in the middle of all of it. The staff were wonderful and welcoming, and always took the time to talk. The professors were always thoughtful and engaging. And, of course, the program attracts a certain kind of person––adventurous, thoughtful, and deeply curious. Being at Hebrew U. allowed me to feel connected to something even as I broadened my horizons, wider than I ever thought possible.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Palestinian makloubeh at Mo's place––Sarwa Street Kitchen––in East Jerusalem. The best on earth.
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Lindsay
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Best semester and experience I could ask for

My time at Hebrew University was easily my favorite semester of college. I met incredible people, had extremely engaging professors, and explored the beautiful city of Jerusalem. The staff at the university care so much about the students and offer a ton of support and resources. I especially loved my Jerusalem architecture class with Professor Abraham Silver.

I was able to join a research project at the university, meet and have lunch with Dennis Ross, and still have time to adventure and explore the city.

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Jacob
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Glad I Chose Jerusalem

During this time of uncertainty, I invite undergraduates like myself to embrace the unusual and carve out an experience that may be different than what they were expecting. My experiences abroad in Israel have shown me that being open minded and flexible to the fast-changing environment we’ve found ourselves in is the straightest path to making the most of a difficult situation. Despite everything, I’m so grateful to have been here and seen Israel under these circumstances. Not only has Israeli perseverance and the community helped them come out of this time stronger, but because of it I’ve been able to spend such an odd moment in history having unforgettable experiences: exploring Akko and Tzfat, snorkeling in the Red Sea, hiking in the Golan, and tasting local street foods throughout Jerusalem. And with no tourists in the country, I have had the opportunity to witness the authentic, local life.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
Probably have Corona not hit while I was here, but I’m convinced being in isolation in the Student Village on Mount Scopus was the best place to be isolated possible.
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Elif
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Best place to study social sciences and meet with highly intellectual people!!

I'm an engineering major but wanted to try something different for my exchange experience. I took many social science classes from Rothberg and cannot regret even one of them. Without much background in them, the synergy of Rothberg encouraged me to learn and enjoy all of my courses. The professors and instructions I had were either having an excellent academic background or a substantial field experience and, most amazingly, usually both. Students who chose to come here were mature, open-minded, and resilient. It's a great place to challenge one another and observe life under conflict. You learn how to look at things from both sides and explore your authentic self even more. The student office took great care of us by providing help any time we need, organizing field trips and hikes, having regular speakers from different social and ethnic groups in Israel.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
Rothberg is a great place to meet with many different people, but it can also be a bubble that prevents many international students from getting localized. By staying off-campus with local Israelis and solo traveling in the country helped me getting to know Israelis better. However, if I get this chance one more time, I would even try harder. And I highly recommend studying Hebrew beforehand. I wish my Hebrew skills were better at the time.

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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Lisa Niver Rajna, M.A. Ed. is an accomplished travel agent, blogger, speaker, science teacher and member of the Traveler’s Century Club, a unique travel club limited to travelers who have visited one hundred or more countries. Lisa writes a monthly column in LA Mom Magazine, for blogs on the Jewish Journal, WeSaidGoTravel and WeSaidGoScience, and for the travel section at Technorati.com. She is now writing a book with her husband about their journey together exploring Southeast Asia.

Why did you decide to study abroad with Hebrew University in Jerusalem?

After spending a summer in Israel on the teen tour, I planned to return to Israel for a semester of study. I think I picked Hebrew University because that was the institution where most of the students from University of Pennsylvania studied. I also wanted to be in Jerusalem.

What made your study abroad experience unique and special?

Living in Jerusalem was incredible. After growing up in Los Angeles, I felt like I had moved directly into a history book. In comparison, Los Angeles and the United States seemed like such young regions!! One class I took consisted solely of only field trips! Every week we went somewhere incredible and learned new facts about history and culture. I loved it. Another class I took was called the Legacy of Eastern-European Judaism. At the end of the semester, we went on a two-week “field trip” to Poland. In hindsight, I would have chosen to visit Poland first, and then Israel, because much of the trip was about communities that no longer existed. Witnessing Israel afterwards as a blooming, growing place would have made for a more inspiring ending. Still, the journey was incredible!

I loved meeting so many students from different universities. I made great friends. The best thing was that I had an Israeli roommate. I knew my Hebrew had gotten pretty decent when I was able to fight with my roommate in her own language!

I was also able to connect with family. My aunt is Israeli and her sisters really took care of me while I lived in Israel. It was an incredible feeling to be so far from home and still have someone local to visit for Shabbat and holidays.

How has this experience impacted your future?

Studying abroad opened my mind to so many different cultural viewpoints! I think that being willing to leave the University of Pennsylvania for a semester to live in Israel was crucial to many later of my life decisions: to leave graduate school, to travel 100% and work on a cruise ship, to know that there were many paths to personal evolution. Now that I have traveled so much, I have seen so many different lifestyles. When my boyfriend asked me to quit my job and spend a full year in South East Asia, I thought first of my semester abroad. I remembered spending Spring Break in Italy and traveling to Spain for a week and I thought that was great!

I remember before I left for Israel I was so nervous. I told my dad, “I wont know anyone. I won’t have anyone to talk to.” I felt so scared. He said, “You are right. Probably no one will talk to you!.” I thought, that does not feel very supportive. Then he continued, “But after ten minutes, you will have two new best friends and meet everyone in the dorm and have a fantastic semester.” Having the courage to take the leap and spend the semester in another country on another continent really changed my entire life's perspective.

Read more about Lisa and her husband George's travel adventures on their blog: We Said Go Travel.