Candidates who are accepted into the program are assigned to an internship in Israel in fields such as finance, venture capital, consulting, and technology. Throughout the summer internship, Fellows can expect to gain in-depth knowledge and experience from high-level executives. Birthright Israel Excel Fellows become an integral part of the team in the office.
In addition, Excel Fellows will engage with distinguished Israeli leaders from business, technology, politics and philanthropic organizations on a broad range of topics including leadership, innovation, Jewish identity, the global economy, and teamwork. Each Fellow is paired with a mentor within the firm who acts as their supervisor but who also takes an active role in discussing future career paths, business interests and commitment to Israel and the Jewish community.
Excel is a great program that brings the best talent from the Jewish community abroad to Israel, the whole process was seamless and the value that the team and I got from working with the intern was great.
–Amir Pinchas, Principal at Microsoft Ventures
How will I spend my time as Birthright Israel Excel Fellow?
The program schedule adheres to Israeli work week which is Sunday through Thursday, and participants can expect to work a minimum of 40 hours per week. Fellows are often expected to work beyond these required hours and to participate in a variety of organized activities. They should expect an intense program, without much free time.
View a sample calendar
Not all learning takes place in the boardroom. In addition, Fellows travel to sites of historical, religious, and cultural interest, and participate in projects designed to encourage a deeper understanding of the State of Israel and its history. In order to enhance their connection to daily Israeli life, participants are paired with an Israeli peer who acts as a guide in navigating the culture and lifestyle of Israeli society.
At least 2-3 times during each week (in the evening after work) and on most weekends there is additional MANDATORY programming focused on the development of leadership skills and business and political awareness. Birthright Israel Excel Fellows have the unique opportunity to be exposed to a group of professionals with vast intellectual resources who will broaden their understanding of the Israeli business, political and academic spectrums. These leaders will give their insight into advancing global connections through entrepreneurship, innovation, perseverance and passion.
The Israeli Peers
A key component of the summer experience is engaging with Israelis of similar age. Each American fellow is matched with an Israeli peer after a thoughtful pairing process. Israeli peers are either serving in the Israel Defense Forces or studying areas of comparable interest. It is often said that the Israeli peers add more to the summer experience than the internships themselves.
This is a chance to get to know Israel through its people. Israeli peers attend the same lectures, travel with Birthright Israel Excel on weekend trips, and meet up with Excel fellows outside of programming. Together, fellows and their Israeli peers explore their views about personal, religious, and political identities and ideologies. They discuss what it means to serve the country, defend the Jewish people, and live in Israel.
Israeli peers provide fellows with an incomparable experience of learning together, connecting to Israel, and forging deep friendships. Upon completion of the summer, both American and Israeli alumni will continue to network together to expand professional opportunities, participate in community and social responsibility initiatives, offer guidance and support, and collaborate on ideas. Collectively, fellows and peers form an exclusive, growing community of international Jewish business and technology leaders.
Read more about the experience after the internship