Lexington, Virginia • December 11, 2009
Four Washington and Lee University students were selected to participate in a free, 10-day trip to Israel during their December break through Taglit-Birthright Israel. This is the seventh year that W&L Hillel is participating in this program.
Birthright Israel, the largest college Israel experience in history, provides the gift of first-time, peer-group, educational trips to Israel for Jewish young adults ages 18 to 26. The gift is funded through private philanthropists, the government of Israel and local Jewish communities around the world. The goal is to strengthen participants' personal Jewish identity and connection to the Jewish people.
The four students, seniors Emily Martin from Live Oak, Texas, and Zack Segall from Owings Mill, Md.; and sophomores Josh Posner from Boca Raton, Fla., and Lev Raslin from Kinnelon, N.J., were selected by W&L Hillel and Hillel International after completing a lengthy application and interview process. They will travel to Israel with students from Princeton, Elon and Bucknell universities and Union College.
Hillel's program is a packed, fun-filled experience that involves extensive touring of Israel, interactive discussions, recreational activities and time to hang out with new friends. The trip is staffed by Hillel professionals, who help to create meaningful and educational opportunities for the students.
Students frequently return to campus with an enduring commitment to Jewish life. Last summer, David Sternlicht '11 participated on the Taglit-Birthright Israel trip, and wrote that "since I left Israel, all I have been able to think about is returning. The fun I had, the friends I made, and the emotional connection I felt made Israel feel like an addictive drug-a desire that I needed to fulfill.
"My wishes were granted as I have been accepted to Tel Aviv University to study abroad from January through May of 2010. My experience in Israel was completely invaluable, and I cannot wait to build on this experience with more freedom to explore the rest of what Israel has to offer."