The Student News Site of Northwest Yeshiva High School

The Mane Idea

The Student News Site of Northwest Yeshiva High School

The Mane Idea

The Student News Site of Northwest Yeshiva High School

The Mane Idea

NYHS seniors choose a gap year in Israel despite recent attacks

NYHS+seniors+choose+a+gap+year+in+Israel+despite+recent+attacks
Hannah Hason

Following the deadly attack on Israel on October 7, concerns over personal safety in the country have significantly increased. Despite this, nine out of ten graduating seniors from Northwest Yeshiva High School are choosing to take a gap year in Israel. 

“It’s really important to be in the place where people need you most,” senior Yasmin Jassen said. Jassen plans to volunteer during her gap year at Midreshet Eshel, a seminary located in the Old City, to help her country. Afterward, she will be joining the Israel Defense Forces. She believes joining the IDF is more important to her now than ever. “I want to protect my country,” Jassen said. Classmate Sephi Alhadeff is taking a gap year at Israel XP at Bar-Ilan University and also believes that now is the time to be in Israel regardless of the war. “No matter the crisis, I will always be there for my people,” Alhadeff said.

Becca Benezra is doing a gap year at Aardvark Israel, where she will volunteer with Magen David Adom and intern at a hospital in Tel Aviv. Benezra believes in the importance of going to Israel despite her fear of attacks on the country. “Obviously, we’re gonna be scared,” Benezra said. “The right way to respond to that isn’t to be scared and just stay away from something so important to us.” Benezra believes facing scary situations head-on and offering help is the best approach. Next year she will do her part by taking on a critical role as an EMT, using the certification she earned last summer with Hatzalah Rescue through NCSY in Israel.

Hannah Klinghoffer will attend Baer Miriam Seminary located on the outskirts of Yerushalayim, in the Har Nof neighborhood. Klinghoffer believes in the importance of spending her gap year in Israel despite the war, as it will allow her to learn and grow before attending college and becoming an adult. “I think it’ll be really meaningful for the whole class and I’m really excited to see everyone grow,” Klinghoffer said. Jenna Kaufthal will also be going to a seminary next year at Midreshet Torah V’Avodah and agrees with Klinghoffer’s sentiment of the importance of a gap year. “It’s an incredibly crucial year of your life and I wouldn’t wanna give that up for anything,” Kaufthal said. Kaufthal also believes that going to Israel during the war will bring her to have a stronger experience and connection to Israel. 

This shared perspective was reinforced during the seniors’ recent trip to Israel in May, where they volunteered to support Jewish and Israeli communities. Kaufthal says the war in Israel has deeply affected all the seniors, so volunteering there made the trip meaningful. “Being given the opportunity to go help with real people who have been very gravely affected by the war has been really amazing,” Kaufthal said. “We’re all very interested in taking the opportunity to help and we see the value of coming to Israel despite the war.”

 

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Paulina Gamel
Paulina Gamel, Staff Writer

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