What is an IGF internship?
An internship, as understood and envisaged by the IGF program, is an unpaid work placement where the rewards are the professional and personal experience gained and the skills developed. Our Fellows join IGF to truly experience “work worth doing”, getting to know the system’s ins and outs and being an important part of the projects (and challenges) facing each department’s area of responsibility and jurisdiction.
Fellows on the program are placed in positions of genuine responsibility, working with senior figures and officials in the Israeli government and related organizations.
How are placements determined?
Every Fellow will be given a list of the possible internship options and, after a one-on-one discussion with the Program Deputy Director, they will choose five placements from the list. Fellows CVs and relevant details are then sent to the offices of the relevant potential placements and the final decision will be made according to the requirements of those offices, each Fellow’s preferences and in conjunction with the judgment of the Program Director.
Can the internship be in a language other than English?
IGF places great importance on the references provided by previous employers, professors, academic supervisors, community leaders or shlichim (Israeli community representatives). We provide guidelines, which may be found at the end of the application form, for prospective referees, which outlines what we require from them in a letter of recommendation. Applicants are advised to carefully decide on the referees who can best describe how they will be suitable for the program, with reference to the qualities and skills that are required.
If I don’t like my internship workplace or I don’t fit in there, will I be able to transfer to another internship?
Transfers are possible. As IGF is responsible for the Fellows’ overall experience, its staff will do all they can to ensure a successful program for each Fellow and will arrange a change in placement if and when it is ever required.
Why is the educational programing so important?
This content provides Fellows with a framework of knowledge that will help them understand the workings of the country, introducing them to the key issues and challenges that have faced Israeli governments, past and present. It also offers them professional training which will support their experience as interns.
The IGF program aims to develop the leadership skills of its participants. A core belief of the program is that a nuanced understanding and knowledge is the foundation of good decision-making. We believe that future leaders must be aware of a verity of (at times conflicting) perspectives before finalizing their own agenda. The educational component exposes Fellows to all sides of the various debates in Israeli politics and society – left and right, religious and secular, Jewish and Arab.
What are the Tiyulim?
Over the course of the ten-month, there are several Tiyulim (trips) around the country, ranging from 1-4 days. These will enable Fellows to experience Israel in all its diversity and to get to know its people better. There will also be several walking tours in Jerusalem itself, exploring social, religious and political issues.
What is the Ulpan?
Ulpan is intensive Hebrew language studies. English is the working language of the program but it is hugely beneficial for Fellows to develop basic conversational Hebrew, both to support their internship experience in Hebrew-speaking environments, and to assist their general development as Jewish leaders.
Fellows will attend daily Ulpan sessions throughout their first weeks in Israel, after which periodic follow-ups will take place. IGF uses a tried-and-tested Ulpan course which specializes in spoken Hebrew, with significant personal attention from teachers.
Who are our speakers?
The IGF program is proud of its record of exposing its participants to the highest quality of a diverse array of speakers. The program chooses political and public figures from across the political spectrum, expressing the full range of opinions that feature in Israel’s vibrant democracy. Special emphasis is placed on the speaker’s field of expertise, therefore, many of the lectures will be held with leading scholars, journalists, and advocates.
The educational component will include a series of lectures, as well as participation in a wide range of conferences, tours, and meetings around the country.