Taglit-Birthright Israel 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
The 10th annual Israel Experience College Scholarship Program brought 17
Christian college students to the Knesset on Monday, part of a three-week
workshop preparing them to be advocates for Israel.
The program is like a
Christian version of Taglit-Birthright, in which top students with diplomatic
capabilities get a free trip to learn about Israel and get the tools to combat
anti-Israel rhetoric on their campuses.
Some of the program's alumni have
gone on to work for the White House, the European Union and for US senators and
“Despite being the only beacon of freedom and democracy in the
Middle East, we are losing the battle for public opinion on university
campuses,” said Josh Reinstein, director of the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus,
expressing hope that the scholarship program will help combat anti-Israel
The college students met with American-born MK Dov Lipman (Yesh
Atid), who called it “inspiring to see young people outside the Jewish faith who
understand the importance and significance of the State of Israel.”
believe we need to reach out and create bridges between Israeli students and
students throughout the Western world to tell the truth about Israel and promote
our shared values,” Lipman said.
Danielle DosSantos, a student at Rutgers
University, said pro- Israel voices do not have enough of a presence on her
campus, where she has seen anti-Semitism in pro-Palestinian
“The Israel Experience College Scholarship program is
equipping me with the knowledge to counter speech directed against Israel,
educate the misinformed and promote peace,” she said.
Brooke Brewer, a
student at California State University Long Beach, said the trip has been an
eye-opening experience, and that misconceptions about Israel were dispelled in a
way that she can share with others at home.