Post-University Programs Scholarship Recipients

Fall 2008 and Year Course

The Helyn B. Reich Scholarship Committee is pleased to announce its selection of five outstanding candidates, who will receive scholarships to study in Israel. These students distinguish themselves through their passionate support for the Zionist cause on their campuses and in their communities, exhibiting great promise as the future leaders of a pro-Israel America.

Recipients Attending Post-University Programs

Ilana Arnowitz

Ilana Arnowitz, who will participate in the OTZMA program, has deferred her acceptance to NYU’s School of Law for a year in order to engage in service work in Israel. A leader in the University of Florida Gators for Israel, she organized activities to advance campus-wide awareness of foreign affairs, and dialogued with the Palestinian campus group on human rights, terrorism and sovereingty. The summer of her sophomore year, she participated in Israel Plus, a volunteer trip for past Birthright participants which included work in the Ayalim Student Village, the Mevaseret Ethiopian Absorption Center, and with Magen David Adom.

“As an international business attorney, I hope to assist in creating joint-venture opportunities for Israeli start-up companies, and to continue my national service by bostering Israel’s economic and technological advancements. I feel that I cannot begin my career path without first embarking on the OTZMA program and working hands-on to contribute to the quality of life for citizens throughout Israel.”
– Ilana Arnowitz

Melissa Keene

A medical student at Northwestern University, Melissa Keene will be attending the OTZMA program. Melissa participates in the Israelimmud Israel advocacy and education fellowship for graduate students and is the president of Northwestern’s Jewish Medical Student Organization. She has also served as a counselor on the BBYO Passport 2 Israel trip to Eastern Europe and Israel. At OTZMA, Melissa will work with Magen David Adom, complete a women’s health internship, and help teach English in Kiryat Gat.

“The combination of my medical education with my Israeli education from OTZMA will allow me to emerge as a knowledgeable leader and social provider for the Jewish communities of Chicago, North America, and our beloved Israel.” – Melissa Keene

Justin Pollack

Justin Pollack, who will attend WUJS’s Land, Language & Society program, plays an active community role engaging teens with Israel as Director of Teen Programs and Education for the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County, Florida. A participant with BBYO from a young age, he has assumed leadership roles in the organization, and was active in Hillel and the Jewish fraternity AEPI on his college campus, the University of Central Florida. His long-term goals include earning a Masters in Jewish education or Jewish communal service, and advancing to a top-level professional position in a Jewish organization.

“I wanted to attend the WUJS program ever since I heard abuot it on my Birthright trip in 2003… [It] will help propel me forward in my goals.” – Justin Pollack

Aliyah Schneider

Aliyah, who will be participating in WUJS: Land, Language & Society, serves as Development Associate for the Jewish Federation of St. Louis. She also volunteers with the St. Louis Israel Connection, which fosters connections between young adults in the community in their 20s and 30s and Israel. She has been a part of implementing and recruiting for “Java Talk,” which meets at a local coffeehouse to discuss topics related to Israel. A recent Birthright participant, Aliyah hopes to use her time at WUJS to look for ways to further the connection between Diaspora Jewry and Israel.

“My ultimate goal is to bridge the life I’ve led thus far as an American Jew [and] the land and people of Israel by building a more profound relationship with the land while strengthening my skills as a leader/ambassador for the couontry.”
– Aliyah Schneider

Congratulations to this year’s recipients and best of luck!