Perspectives Fellowship

The Perspectives Fellowship is Penn Hillel’s leadership journey to Israel and the Palestinian Territories.

The purpose of this program is to educate emerging and current Penn undergraduate student leaders about Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, shining an intentional light on the complexities and nuances in an immersive and experiential way.

This highly selective program seeks students who are greatly motivated to gain a deeper understanding of Israel and Palestine and to share what they learn with the broader Penn community. Throughout the journey, participants will be expected to ask challenging questions, engage in group discussions and reflection, and to practice resilient listening.

Participants in The Perspectives Fellowship will form a learning community to further one another’s understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing Israel and Palestine. All participants will be required to participate in three to four intensive pre-trip orientation sessions during spring in March and April.

Applications for the May 21-31, 2024 Perspectives Trip will open in late November 2023. Check this page for more information and the application link then.

Dates: May 21-31, 2024

2023 Perspectives cohort

2023 Fellowship Cohort at Mt. Olives

What you can expect on the summer journey to Israel and the Palestinian Territories:

· Explore the multi-ethnic, religious, and national diversity of the Old City of Jerusalem and other parts of Israel and the Palestinian Territories.

· Tour the separation barrier/security wall that divides Israel and the West Bank.

· Gain a close-up understanding of the geopolitical challenges on the Gaza-Israel border in the south and the Syria-Israel border in the north.

· Visit Tel Aviv and Jaffa, Haifa and Akko, Jerusalem, and key sites of interest throughout Israel.

· Visit Ramallah, the current capital of the Palestinian Authority, and other areas of the Palestinian Territories to hear from Palestinian leaders and locals.

· Learn from, and engage with, a variety of voices and perspectives from the religious, secular, Druze, Christian, Jewish-Israeli, Palestinian, Muslim, and other communities.

· Meet journalists, politicians, artists, intellectuals, activists, and other leaders.

· Enjoy delicious cuisine, hike in the beautiful desert, and build community with a diverse group of fellow Penn students.


· Applications are currently closed.

· Pre-trip orientation sessions will take place during March and April.

· Dates for our journey to Israel and the Palestinian Territories will be May 21-31, 2024.

· Post-trip programming will take place in Fall 2024.

Sample Itinerary

10:15 am Welcome to Israel! Assistance upon arrival and board bus for Jerusalem.
• Ascend to Jerusalem via the Judean Hills.
• Stop at the Goldman Promenade for an introductory view of Jerusalem and the area.
• Lunch on your own on the way to the Old City.
• Enter the Old City via Jaffa Gate for an introduction to the complexities of Jerusalem and the region from
the rooftops of the Old City, exploring the multi ethnic weave and the layers of complexity as seen from above, continuing with a short walk through the meandering alleyways to the Western Wall Plaza at the base of the Temple Mount – Haram el Sharif.
• Check in to Jerusalem hotel, with free time for rest and relaxation.
• Opening Dinner at the hotel.
• Welcome to the Region: Israelis, Palestinians and What to Expect, with Paul Liptz

Overnight: Dan Boutique, Jerusalem

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• 8:30 am The Memory of the Holocaust in Contemporary Israeli Society, with scholar Shalmi BarMor
• Depart for The Hill of Memory.
• 10:00 am -Visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s national memorial for the Holocaust, including the Avenue of the Righteous, the Holocaust History Museum, and the Children’s Memorial.
• Possible visit to the graves of Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres on Mount Herzl, for a glimpse at the
personal and national roles that play in the modern State of Israel.
• Opportunity for Juma Prayers for Muslim participants.
• Drive to central Jerusalem for a visit to Machane Yehuda Market with its scents and colors and throngs of Jerusalemites and guests preparing for the Sabbath, with lunch on your own.
• Free time for Jerusalem exploration.
• Depart the hotel for Kabbalat Shabbat (welcoming in the Sabbath) at the Kotel (Western Wall).
• Shabbat dinner at the hotel.
Overnight: Dan Boutique, Jerusalem

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• Optional early Sabbath Services at Jerusalem synagogues.
• Depart for a guided walking tour exploring the multi-ethnic, religious, and national weave of the Old City
of Jerusalem, on to the Austrian Hospice for a bird’s eye view of the Muslim and Christian Quarters, the
Temple Mount, and the Mount of Olives, followed by a guided walk in the church of the Holy Sepulchre,
Lunch on own in the Old City
• Return to the hotel in the late afternoon for rest and relaxation.
• 6:30 pm Optional Catholic Mass at the Notre Dame Cathedral.

8:11 pm Havdallah, end of Sabbath ceremony, overlooking the walls of the Old City.
• Dinner at the hotel.
Overnight: Dan Boutique, Jerusalem

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• Israelis, Palestinians and How to Read the Map, with scholar Ezra Korman

9:00 am Depart for a guided religious, geopolitical to one of the most complex and sacred sites to both Jews and Muslims – The Temple Mount.
Visit Ramallah, the current capital of the Palestinian Authority, for a glimpse at the Palestinian infrastructure
for statehood, including meetings with Palestinian Authority members, university students and/or young
• My Hopes for the Palestinian People in the West Bank: Visit Rawabi, the new Palestinian city north of
Ramallah, for a glimpse at this unique project, a synthesis between private enterprise and public
resources to create a new urban reality in Palestinian society and meet with developer Bashar el Masri.
Lunch on own in Rawabi.
• 5:00 PM Drive to Taybeh and visit the Taybeh Brewery for both Beer Tasting and conversation with members of the Khoury Family who founded the brewery after returning to Taybeh from the United States as a result
of the Oslo Accords.
• Return to Jerusalem.
• Group processing session.
• Dinner at the hotel, followed by Covering Palestinian Society as an Israeli Arab, with journalist Khaled Abu Toameh.
• Optional visit to Machane Yehuda Market and the Beer Bazaar on your own.
Overnight: Dan Boutique, Jerusalem

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• Depart hotel for the Gaza Border area.
• Visit the Siboni overlook for an up to date briefing on the realties along the Gaza Border, while looking into Gaza City.
• Continue to Sderot and visit the Underground Playground for a discussion with local educators on some of the challenges and triumphs of their work in the shadow of conflict.
• Drive to Bethlehem
• Lunch in Bethlehem.
• Guided visit along the graffiti painted on the Wall between Jerusalem and Bethlehem concluding at the
Walled Off Hotel and the Bansky Museum on the Wall.
• My Home in Palestine: Meet with Vera Baboun, who served as the first female Mayor of Bethlehem, 2012-
• Visit the Church of the Nativity in the heart of Bethlehem.
• Return to Jerusalem.
• 3:30 PM Meet Kids4Peace, one of the most successful co-existence projects in the Middle East, and the director, Udi Cohen, at Beit Tsafafa
• 6:30 PMIsrael and the Palestinians @2018: Where do we Stand, a conclusion to the day, at hotel, with geopolitics expert, Iftah Burman
• Dinner at the hotel.
• Free evening to explore Jerusalem.
Overnight: Dan Boutique, Jerusalem

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• Depart Jerusalem.
• Drive toward the Dead Sea Basin.
• My Home in Judea and Samaria, visit the settlement of Mitzpeh Yericho for a conversation with a resident
on why living in the Land of Israel over the Green Line is important for the future of the Jewish People.
• Stop at the Neve Midbar Dead Sea Beach for an opportunity to float in the Dead Sea.
• Drive through the Jordan Valley.
• Visit Capernaum, where Jesus taught and site of an ancient synagogue, Tabgha site of the Multiplication
of the Loaves and Fish and/or the Mount of Beatitudes, site of the Sermon on the Mount.
• 3:00 pm ride along the Golan Plateau by jeep, with Ishay Alf ,exploring both the
natural beauty and the strategic lay of the land, including a briefing overlooking Syria.
Drive to and check in to the guesthouse.
• Dinner at the guesthouse.
• Processing session
Overnight: Golan Hotel, Tiberias

• Breakfast and check out of the hotel.
• Drive across the Galilee to the Druze village of ‘Isfiya to learn about the Druze minority, followed by
home hospitality lunch in the home of an ‘Isfiya re¬sident.
• Drive to Kfar Kara in the Wadi Ara area for a visit to the home of Amna Kamaana, a Muslim Israeli woman who established a Muslim women’s empowerment organization in her home.
• Continue to Tel Aviv.
• Check in to the hotel.
• Dinner on own and free evening in Tel Aviv.
• Walk to a local bar and enjoy the Tel Aviv nightlife.
Overnight: Ruth Daniel, Tel Aviv

• Breakfast at the hotel.
• 9:00 am Meet with Israeli poet Adi Keissar, founder of the “Ars Poetica” project, a new wave of Middle Eastern poetry in the form of readings combined with music and dance.

• 10:30 am Guided “Rainbow Tour” that tells the story of the Israeli gay community in Tel Aviv to discover the secrets of the largest LGBTQ community in Israel by walking through the main sites and learning about
the events that shaped this community.
• Lunch on your own.
• Walk through the Levinsky Park in south Tel Aviv and visit the Eliphelet Day Care Center, a volunteer project for the children of asylum seeker run by Israeli volunteers.
• Enjoy free time in the afternoon for last-minute shopping and exploration of “The White City”.
• 6:00pm Summation conversation with Major Gen ( ret)Miri Eisen, at hotel
• 7:30 pm Concluding processing session, followed by a festive farewell dinner at Maganda Restaurant
Overnight: Ruth Daniel, Tel Aviv

• Breakfast at the hotel.
8:45 am Depart for Ben Gurion Airport.
12:15 pm Return flight to the US.

Additional Information:

· Students selected for this initiative will participate on a very highly-subsidized 10-day educational journey to Israel and the Palestinian Territories. If accepted, the cost of the trip is $250.

· If you have questions about The Perspectives Fellowship or would like further information, please contact Jenna Ferman at

Apply Now to be part of this unique leadership cohort.
Space is very limited!