Fifteen companies to present their developed technologies to tech giants Google, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and AT&T
Fifteen Israeli start-up companies will tour Silicon Valley in the San Francisco Bay area early next month, where they will present their developed technologies to giant corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook and AT&T.
The visit, organized by the California-Israel Chamber of Commerce, is aimed at increasing the exposure to the Israeli companies in Silicon Valley. It will kick off in the office of Mike Moritz, an investor at Sequoia Capital.
Additional officials the companies’ representatives will meet include David Gee, an HP vice president; Dan’l Lewin, corporate vice president at Microsoft; and Robert Scoble of the Scobleizer blog.
One of the companies taking part in the tour is MoMinis, which specializes in building game development tools for mobile phones, which enable adjusting the games automatically to different types of devices. MoMinis has agreements in Russia and other countries.
Another company is Onavo, which was founded by blogger Guy Rosen and Roi Tiger of Modu. The company has developed a technology which is says can save up to 90% in mobile phone surfing, in Israel or abroad.
The other participating companies are CellSec, Digimo, DudaMobile, Exent, FellowUp, Fooducate, Innobell, Perfecto Mobile, Rewardy, Ringbow, TekTrak, Zipory and ZooZ.
The California State University (CSU) system plans to resume system-wide opportunities for students to study abroad in Israel. The office of CSU Chancellor Charles Reed informed the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC) and California State Assembly member Bob Blumenfield that CSU plans to allow students at CSU system schools to travel to Israel for academic programs beginning in the fall of 2012.
CSU suspended its Israel study opportunities in 2002 in the wake of the second intifada, when the US State Department issued a travel warning for American citizens visiting Israel. The warning remains in effect, but many schools have found ways to reinstate study abroad programs in Israel.
CSU – the largest university system in the US, with 23 campuses and over 400,000 students – now joins the ranks of many other schools that have reinstated study abroad programs in Israel.
“This excites me so much,” said San Francisco State University sophomore Matthew Horowitz, who already is beginning to explore his options for study in Israel. “We heard about the decision today, and it’s fantastic.”
According to CSU System Director of International Programs Leo Van Cleve, the decision sets in motion a review process aimed at assessing the risk involved in study in Israel. By December, CSU will issue a policy statement outlining guidelines for students who wish to study in Israel despite the continuing State Department advisory, and the first CSU students will enroll in Israeli classes in fall 2012.
“Health, safety and security are the big issues for any university operating a study abroad program,” Van Cleve told Israel Campus Beat. “The restriction about sending students to Israel was never about stopping students from going to Israel. It was about our sponsorship of programs in places with health, safety or security concerns.”
He noted that CSU has suspended its programs in other places that did not meet the university’s criteria; next year no CSU students will study in Mexico.
“Our goal is to be sure we are satisfied that our students can go [to Israel] and be healthy, safe and secure,” Van Cleve added.
The ICC applauded the CSU decision. “We congratulate Chancellor Charles Reed and his outstanding staff in deciding to embark on resuming study abroad in Israel for Cal State students,” said Stephen Kuperberg, ICC Executive Director. “Cal State is a leader in providing excellent educational opportunities to the people of California and in helping its students achieve their goals. We encourage them as they begin the planning process to turn this vision into practical reality and we stand ready to support them however we can.”
Yochai Shavit, the Israel Fellow at San Francisco Hillel, also praised the decision. “I admire the CSU system’s concern for their students’ safety, but this was the right decision,” he said. “It will have tremendous impact on the Jewish identity and education of Jewish CSU students.”
Shavit added that he hopes non-Jewish students will study in Israel along with Jewish students. “Students of all backgrounds will have the opportunity to see firsthand a reality they have only seen through the media and on campus. Now they can go, see and draw their own conclusions.”
This academic year, ICC’s “Let Our Students Go!” study abroad task force set as a goal to help CSU resume its Israel study abroad program. ICC representatives met with CSU officials and worked with a coalition of interested parties, including San Francisco Hillel, the Jewish Public Affairs Committee (JPAC), the Jewish Community Relations Councils (JCRCs) of San Francisco and Los Angeles, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (SPME), and a range of local and global community members to help CSU to re-examine and reach the decision to resume CSU’s study abroad program in Israel. Delegations from the Israeli Consulates in Los Angeles and San Francisco also met separately with CSU officials to offer perspective and information.
Shavit said there will be little time to celebrate the decision because recruiting students to study in Israel will take a lot of work. “Everybody who cares about Israel on CSU campuses has to show the university that they made the right decision,” he said.
Horowitz, the SFSU sophomore, participated in a Birthright trip last summer, and he already is planning his study abroad experience.
By the time he can enroll in an Israeli program, he will be a senior. He may need to delay his graduation in order to take advantage of the opportunity, but that has not deterred him. “I won’t mind studying for a fifth year if I need to,” he said enthusiastically.
Art students spend Good Deeds Day painting murals, fixing up playground in nearly dozens schools in east Jerusalem, Ramla
About 55 art students from the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design Jerusalem spent Israel’s Day of Good Deeds last month painting murals and fixing up a playground in nearly a dozen Arab and Jewish schools in east Jerusalem and Ramla.
The Bezalel students contributed to two projects in honor of Good Deeds Day. The first, in conjunction with the Paley Art Center, saw a group of Bezalel volunteers, headed by Raeda Saada, arts lecturer at Bezalel and head of the Center, painting murals in 10 east Jerusalem schools.
According to Saada, this project fits in perfectly with the Paley Art Center’s aim of promoting the importance of art and awareness. “Art is an educational tool, which helps develop thought,” she says. “It is a means of expression and representing a unique identity, as well as a form of spiritual therapy.
“The goal of the Center is to organize art-oriented activity in east Jerusalem and promote the importance of art and awareness to the key role that it plays in our culture, as well as encourage artistic talents and self-expression through creation. We currently organize a variety of activities at the center for kids, including visits to exhibitions, as well as drawing and photography classes for children with a passion for art,” says Saada. “Bezalel Flowers”, the teenagers being mentored by Bezalel students, participated with their mentors in the second Good Deeds project in Ramla – working with the neighborhood’s Jewish and Arab residents to rebuild and decorate the playground at an Arab school and paint murals at a religious Jewish school.
“Bezalel Flowers” is an initiative that began six years ago when the Bezalel Academy opened its doors to youth from various economic environments and from different backgrounds (Jews, Arabs, religious, secular) in Jerusalem and the surrounding area. Every Sunday, 110 children (from 10th to 12th grade) come to the Academy and work with Bezalel students who help them nurture their talent and develop new skills.
“The program lasts three years, during which these high-school students are introduced to the abundant offerings of the various departments at the Academy,” Tamar Arman, who runs the program. “The fact that the participating pupils study in an academic environment constitutes a means for boosting their motivation to higher achievements in the present, and forms a bridge to higher education in the future.”
The goal of Good Deeds Day is to encourage volunteering and contribution to the community. In previous years, tens of thousands of Israelis participated in volunteer projects on this day. Last year, over 70,000 volunteers participated in 1000 projects, in 130 cities and regional councils across Israel. Initiated by Shari Arison, with the contribution of the Ted Arison Family Fund, Good Deeds Day is organized by the Ruach Tovah (Good Spirit) organization.
Holocaust (Shoah) remembrance day from the eye of an Israeli :
“Today at 10am, May 2, 2011 war sirens throughout the entire country of Israel were heard. At this time, everybody stops what they are doing to stand in silence and pay a minute of respect for all of the millions of innocent people who died and suffered through the Holocaust. Here is what it looked like when I stood at the Dizengoff Square (“Kikar Dizengoff”), as I stood in silence, paying my respects and reflecting on how I will never forget those who fell. RIP
In Bibi Netanyahu’s speech tonight for Holocaust Remembrance Day: “If we don’t defend ourselves, the world won’t stand by our side. It is appropriate to declare here, today, and now to all of our enemies that they should know one thing: When the people of Israel and the army of Israel say to the world ‘never again’, we mean every word.”
Tel Aviv has been named one of the top 10 hottest summer party spots for 2011 by HotelsCombined.com, a leading hotel price comparison search engine.
The Israeli city, ranked ninth on the list, is described as “home to some of the hottest nightclubs in the Middle East”.
Nicknamed “the city that never stops”, the website says, Tel Aviv boasts a steamy nocturnal playground not for the faint of heart, with beachfront parties, underground clubs and bartenders who are said to be “notoriously generous with alcohol servings”.
Ibiza, Spain tops the list, followed by Ios in Greece, Las Vegas, the German capital of Berlin and the British capital of London.