I was accepted into the Masa Israel Teaching Fellowship program (MITF) to teach ESL to children in Israel for the 2017-2018 school year! This program is in partnership with Israel’s Ministry of Education and The Jewish Agency for Israel, a once in a lifetime opportunity to immerse myself in Israel’s culture while also gaining teaching experience overseas, learning Hebrew, and learning about my Jewish heritage.
When I returned from Israel after my December Birthright trip, I immediately started looking for (heavily subsidized) ways to get back overseas. The Masa Israel programs were recommended to me and I happened to receive two recruitment emails from their program coordinators. I figured it was a sign; with graduate school acceptance letters out and my future up in the air, I didn’t know what to do. However, I wanted to do something – so, I decided to apply to the MITF program and see what would happen.
After my first two PhD rejection letters arrived on the same day – Valentine’s Day – I figured that was it for graduate school, and so pushed for my Israel fellowship application acceptance.
Then, the Masters acceptance letters rolled in, and last month I signed and submitted my letter of intent for Syracuse, paid the deposit, and setup my Syracuse email account. Fifteen minutes later, my Masa Israel acceptance letter popped into my inbox. My goodness, what a glorious day...
Through a grant gifted by the Government of Israel, this ten-month program will cost around $1,000 (more or less), and also pays a teaching stipend. I’ll be living in the sought-after community of Rishon LeZion (Rishon LeTsiyon) in Tel Aviv, near both the water and Old Jaffa, where I'll have the opportunity to further explore the artist district!
After much planning, I'm officially deferring my Syracuse University Arts Journalism Masters program for a year, as I will soon age out of this teaching fellowship opportunity in Israel. Ultimately, I'd like to be in Israel looking forward to school and my new life in New York thereafter. I'm incredibly excited to have both opportunities, and to have my next two years laid out. Honestly, it still hasn't sunk-in yet...
In fact, just two days after my return from Israel, I'll be at the Syracuse Masters program Orientation! Haha, this means some overseas apartment-hunting with the help of my mom, who will also transport my pre-packed belongings to my new place before I return, so I don't have to scramble and pass-out from jet lag.
This also gives me more time to look into housing locations for Syracuse, and possibly more grants and scholarships for next year’s academics, too! This is truly when my efficiency and strategic mind have a chance to shine, haha.
Last year I learned to stop over-thinking things - just dive in and DO THEM. The results have clearly been amazing! I feel like, for once, things are working for me. (Yes, I really said 'for once,' don't let internet and social media fool you.)
Well wish me luck on my journey! I'm sure loads of new art and collaborations will follow, haha.