Education has the power to impact the trajectory of disadvantaged individuals throughout all stages in life. Amid this difficult time for us all, the Jaffa Institute remains committed to providing quality educational support in new and unique ways with the goal of maintaining the continuum of learning to keep our program participants and alumni on the right path. During these dark times, it is our pleasure to share some positive news.
Each year, the Jaffa Institute awards 150 hard-working students from our service area with scholarships to pursue higher education. On March 4th, we had the great honor of distributing these scholarships at the annual ceremony, which is held in memory of the Jaffa Institute’s late co-founder Ze’ev (Zonik) Shaham, z’l, who dedicated his life to empowering at-risk Israelis.
Growing up in disadvantaged communities in Israel, motivated students in the Jaffa Institute’s service area are often unable to embark on the path of higher education – not because of a lack of academic talent or a conscientious work ethic – but because they do not have the financial means to cover the costs of tuition and living expenses while studying at a university or college.
Through access to higher education, scholarship recipients of all ages have the opportunity to make drastic changes to their lives and the lives of their families.
Here is Tomer’s Story
Dear Jaffa Institute Community,
My name is Tomer* and I am writing to thank you for being part of your scholarship. I was born and raised in Jaffa, where I completed my K-12 education. After graduating from high school, I served as a soldier and commander in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in the Combat Intelligence Collection Corps for three years. The IDF helped me to develop tremendously, allowing me to set a number of goals for myself that I did not previously think possible.
Today, I live in Beer Sheva with three roommates, in an apartment that is walking distance to my classes at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, where I study in the Department of Electrical Engineering. I chose to study Electrical Engineering because of my love for physics and computer science. In my spare time, I play soccer and basketball in the public courts near my apartment. Ever since I left home, I have been financially independent. My father is a delivery driver and my mother is a cleaner, and their financial situation does not allow them to support me economically.
After completing my degree, I plan to work and gain experience in my field of study. Additionally, I am considering pursuing a master’s degree. I love my studies and the profession of electrical engineering, and I am very happy with my choice to pursue this path.
The Jaffa Institute’s Scholarship Program allows me to study with peace of mind and to focus less on financial barriers. At times when my studies require my undivided attention, the scholarship allows me to invest my best efforts to succeed and give my all to the studies. I look forward to sharing with you next year just how far I’ve come! Until then, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.