Samantha Klazkin

Government and Cities Program Manager, SOSA

Alumna of IGF Session 11, 2016-2017

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After completing the IGF program I decided to make Aliyah. I lived in Jerusalem for a year and half where I did an intensive Ulpan while working part time for IGF. After completing my Ulpan studies, I moved to Tel Aviv where I got a job at the Israel Export Institute. I am still living in Tel Aviv with my boyfriend and adorable dog Noodle. I currently work at SOSA, as the Manager of the Government and City Program.

I chose to participate on the program to see how it felt to live and work in Israel, before making the major decision of moving here permanently. IGF allowed me to get a true sense of what it is like to work in the Israeli workforce, while living independently in Israel. I still feel the same way about Israel as I did the first time I came here as a 14 year old on my school trip.The sense of being a part of history does not escape me. I feel privileged to be able to experience living in a country where so many people, some of whom I truly look up to, dreamt of and fought for. Don’t get me wrong, there are days when the culture differences, language, and honking makes me miss the United States, but overall I feel so lucky to be here.

IGF was my first real experience of truly living in Israel for longer than just a few weeks. The programming was amazing, and I always felt like I was hearing every side of the story. I grew up going to Jewish Day School, so I came here with a strong Jewish education, but I always felt like there was more to learn and discover. The speakers were always engaging and were open to answer difficult questions. Potential partners should know that the IGF program gives its participants a full understanding of the complicated history and struggles that Israel faces, in a diverse and thought-provoking environment.