Abroad at Hebrew U: The Best Semester of My Life Past Review

By (Brandeis University) - abroad from 01/19/2016 to 06/22/2016 with

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Rothberg International School: Undergraduate Study Abroad Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was an absolutely worthwhile experience. Being in Israel gave me a greater appreciation and a deeper understanding of the forces contributing to the Israeli psyche and Israeli mentality. I learned in my courses on Palestinian Modern History and Contemporary Israeli Identities the intricacies and complexities surrounding Israeli and Palestinian identity and their self-understanding. I had the opportunity to travel Israel—from Eilat in the south to the Golan Heights in the north, and much in between. It was an absolute joy--I am forever indebted to my experience abroad in Jerusalem.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

The Hebrew University is an exceptional university, and Jerusalem is the ideal setting for personal growth, learning and exploration. It was the best semester of my life.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? One should budget appropriately and exercise frugality. However, you are abroad, and it is important to take full advantage of all the country has to offer, so spending money is necessary. I recommend applying to scholarships and grants.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Intermediate - Advanced Hebrew
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Listen and absorb the language around you. Try to engage locals and speak as much as possible.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The city
  • The people
  • What I learned
* What could be improved?
  • Greater integration with Israeli and Palestinian students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? There is nothing I know now that I would have liked to have known when my semester began. I tried to experience as much as I could, absorb all that was around me and learn as much as possible--about Israel, Israelis and Palestinians, and myself.