Onward Israel 2018 Week 3: Networking

This week, I wanted to start off again with a few more internship spotlights! Here are five of our group members from Wyoming, Cincinnati, and a little bit about what they are up to this summer!

Name: Ivan Meisner
University: The Ohio State University

Ivan Meisner will start his junior year this fall at The Ohio State University.  This summer he is working for StarTAU, an entrepreneurship organization of Tel Aviv University. Ivan is helping prepare them for a huge innovation conference they have in the summer! At his internship, Ivan gets to network, interview, and meet various companies and investors that will attend the conference. Ivan says been able to learn so much about the international progressional environment, and is looking forward to continuing to learn more every day!


Name: Jay Klein
University: Depauw University

Jay Klein ready to spend a day on the beach.

Jay Klein is another soon to be Junior but he is studying at Depauw University. At school, Jay studies Communications and Psychology, he is also a member of the soccer team. Here in Tel Aviv, Jay is working at a company called Media Shakers, which he says is an advertising network. In his position, Jay is working with the company to help build a new digital marketing project from the ground up! Jay said he’s really been enjoying his time at Media Shakers and is learning so many new skills!


Name: Kelsey Jobalia
University: Depauw University

Kelsey with her boss at Startup Grind.

Kelsey Jobalia is a sophomore studying Physics at the University of Pennsylvania, but her internship is in something distant from her academic work. She is Online Community Manager for the Tel-Aviv branch of the largest global startup community. Startup Grind plans monthly networking events for entrepreneurs and helps them to connect with others in the startup ecosystem. Kelsey has been able to flex her creative muscle as she develops graphic content for her chapter’s online footprint.


Name: Marisa Warm
University: University of Colorado Boulder

Marisa Warm smiling in front of the Dead Sea!!

Marisa Warm is 22 years old and has spent the last 16 months traveling all around the planet. Within her world travels she decided to apply for an Onward internship and is another member of our fun Cincinnati group. While in Tel Aviv, Marisa is interning at the African Refugee Development Center, where she is a higher education case worker. At her position, Marisa helps refugees gain access to a better education. There are various classes at the center that refugees can take that count towards their high school diplomas. The African Refugee Development Center refugees can also find help applying to university and with their resumes. Marisa also said that there are Women’s self-defense courses and Hebrew classes!


Name: Samantha Abel
University: The Ohio State University

Sami Abel (left) with Ali Richter ready for a day of exploring in Tel Aviv.

Samantha Abel is beginning her senior year at The Ohio State University. She is currently interning for a fashion app called Zeekit that lets you virtually try on clothes! These past few weeks her tasks have ranged from helping out on set of photo shoots, creating a college ambassador program for the company, and finding new ways to market the app. Sami said she has really loved working for this company and looks forward to the last few weeks she has to spend at Zeekit!


Last time I wrote, the group had all just gotten back from a fun weekend and was ready to start another week in our Tel Aviv apartment. The beginning of our week was fairly normal. I personally had a busy week at my internship and I know a few other members of the group were busy with their work too. On Wednesday, we all got to leave our internship positions a little earlier than normal and attended an Onward sponsored event with participants from all over the country. Unlike our other excursions and trips, the Onward conference included all of the participants instead of just a few members of each group. Meeting and seeing so many people in similar positions to our group was really cool. Those who participated in the breakout sessions last weekend were reunited with the friends they had made from the other groups.

It was amazing to see the thousands of Onward participants gathered together in one building. The event was huge, and fellow Onward travelers got to enjoy an abundance of food options that lined the walls, including sandwiches, wraps, and burgers as well as vegetables, hummus and falafel. There were so many great options that we all basically ate one of everything! On top of all the savory options, there was a full spread of desserts on a separate buffet. The dessert was my personal favorite part! There were brownies, chocolate croissants, cheesecakes, cake bites, and cookies. There was also a plethora of macaron flavors. We all grabbed some of each flavor and shared them between us. After we all took advantage of the delicious meal, we started mingling and networking for the remainder of the dinner portion. Following the meal, there was an entire presentation planned for us. We heard from various speakers, including a scientist from the Weizmann Institute studying nano-computers, as well as the granddaughter of Prime Minister, Shimon Peres. We also saw an energetic performance including dancing and drums. Following the event, the group gathered in the apartment and live streamed the Costa Rica v. Switzerland game, while we let our food digest and reflected on the day.

Some pictures from the Onward event. Left to Right: Ali Richter Sophie Greenberg, Sami Abel, and Maddi Weiler.

This past weekend was a huge deal in Tel Aviv, it was “Laila Lavan” (also known as “White Night”). White Night is an event spanning through the city of Tel Aviv in which the community comes together and participates in various activities throughout the entire night. Some of the activity options for Laila Lavan were a silent disco, concerts on the beach, the stores and restaurants operating through late night hours, and more while emulating a city that never sleeps. Even more exciting was the fact that our apartment building on Yehuda Halevi street participated in White Night with a rooftop party. We were so lucky that we did not have to travel far for a great view and a good time. The night officially ended after the group watched the sunrise together on the beach. After a fun but exhausting day and night, we all slept in until about 2pm (which was well deserved after a week full of internship work and networking). To finish off the weekend, we spent the day at the beach. This is one of our favorite pastimes where we can enjoy ourselves and unwind in preparation for the work week ahead. We love our beach time especially because we get to play with our soccer ball and paddle ball sets. 

Be sure to check up on us next week to hear about our upcoming trips to Jerusalem and Netanya!



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