Masa Israel Journey Blog

January 14, 2014
By Deborah Malheiro, Yahel Social Change Program
The first time I came to Israel was almost four years ago. I arrived in the house of an Israeli guy that I had met in Argentina who would eventually become my boyfriend. I remember it as if it were yesterday: after two days, he asked me, “Do you like hummus?”
I said, “You know, I think we have this thing in Brazil but I have never tasted it.”
He replied, “It’s the national food of Israel, you must like it.” I tried a small bite, really skeptical, because at that time I was really picky with food, and I saw no purpose at all to like the “Israeli national food”  I didn’t like it and my opinion wouldn’t change for three more years.
At the beginning of this year, I...
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January 02, 2014
By Nicole Hertzberg, Israel Teaching Fellow in Petach Tikva
Before the Masa Israel Leadership Summit, I felt that my resume did not indicate extensive Jewish leadership.  In high school I was involved in BBYO, but I never held any significant positions.  In college, my involvement with Jewish organizations consisted of attending Shabbat dinners at Hillel and attending a few “American Movement for Israel” meetings if I had the time.  My main involvement on the University of Michigan campus was within the Greek community and Model United Nations.  Being a leader in those communities and always feeling very proud to be Jewish, I considered myself a leader and a Jew as two separate entities.  I thought that in order to be considered a “Jewish leader” you had to be a leader in some domain related to Judaism.  
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