The Nesiya Israel Program – Summer 2017

Quick Facts

Years of Programming
Weeks in Israel

2017 Dates: June 26 – July 31
Tuition: $6,950 + flight

Early Bird Discounts:

Apply by November 30th and receive $650 off the program price.

Apply by December 31st and receive $450 off the program price.

Financial Aid: Merit and need based scholarships are available.

Grades: Current High School students.

The Nesiya Summer Program is an Israel program that combines outdoor adventure, workshops in the visual, performing and literary arts, community service projects, cultural activities and creative Jewish study in Israel.

Meet artists, educators, nature guides, activists, and community leaders who will work side by side with you creating, exploring, learning and building. Participants travel through four regions of Israel – the Negev, Galil, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, and the Judean Desert – and focus on the origins, development, and role of the land of Israel in the future of the Jewish people.

This summer, take a journey that makes a difference! Join Nesiya for five weeks in Israel with Israeli and North American peers from diverse backgrounds.

More on Financial Aid:
We provide generous need and merit-based financial aid for those who need it, and will work with you to find sources of funding in your community. For more information about financial aid, please contact us.

Nesiya allows participants to choose between a chaperoned group flight from New York and flying on one’s own. The price for the group flight is $1,650.

Safety and Security:
The Nesiya Institute and Keshet, Nesiya’s program operator, hold the group’s safety and security in their highest priority. Furthermore, all participants are covered by health, travel and tuition protection insurance.

Wait, I still have more questions!
Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page FAQ or email us at!

Nesiya is not an Israel summer trip for teens or Jewish summer camp, it is an Israel program, an Israel experience, an Israel journey.

Travel to Israel to enjoy every aspect of this Jewish teen summer program. Israel travel at its best.

Program Model

Outdoor Adventures in Four Regions of Israel

The five-week Nesiya Experience traces the development of the Jewish people in the land of Israel. We begin in the Negev desert, travel to the Galilee, reach Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, and conclude in the Judean desert. In each region, we hike through diverse landscapes and explore connections with the land, the culture, modern Israeli society, and our own experiences.

“I liked moving around and seeing the land, feeling it. That is the way I will think of Israel.”

Benjamin Brenner, Ann Arbor, MI

Cultural Experiences and Arts Workshops

Modern Israeli culture and the arts provide unique opportunities to be part of a two-way conversation about what Judaism and Israel mean to you personally. Arts workshops provide opportunities to reflect on and respond to your experiences. Workshops are led by dynamic arts educators.

No special background or skills are necessary to participate in these workshops, which emphasize experimentation with ideas and techniques. The atmosphere is non-competitive, and most participants try areas of expression that are new for them.

The five-week Nesiya Experience traces the development of the Jewish people in the land of Israel. We begin in the Negev desert, travel to the Galilee, reach Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, and conclude in the Judean desert. In each region, we hike through diverse landscapes and explore connections with the land, the culture, modern Israeli society, and our own experiences.

“I discovered a totally new creative part of me through arts workshops. I became more confident and felt as though my opinions and ideas really make a difference.”

Ruby Gardner, Beverly Hills, CA

Community Service

On Nesiya we practice the art of giving, a fundamental value in Jewish life. Each Nesiya group completes at least one three-day community service project – usually in a residential school for children from troubled families. Projects have included building playgrounds, painting murals, teaching English, and leading camp activities with Israeli children and teens.

“The community service project was a unique and exciting experience. To stop for a moment and give of yourself to others. To go outside our closed communities and to see our power as a community to contribute to others and to build. It was a wonderful feeling to give to others and, at least for a little while, try to make them smile.”

Reut Amar, Pisgat Ze’ev, Israel

Israeli Peers, Home Hospitality, and Hebrew

Many people tour Israel, but few have the opportunity to live, study, and create a community with Israeli peers. Israeli participants and staff are full members of the Nesiya program. North Americans live, travel, and make lasting relationships with Israelis from secular, traditional, and religious Jewish backgrounds. Israeli participants come from a range of backgrounds including kibbutzim, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, development towns, Ethiopia, and the former Soviet Union. North Americans stay for an extended weekend at the homes of either one of the Israeli participants or with family and friends. The Nesiya Experience provides unique opportunities for North Americans to learn and speak Hebrew – regardless of prior Hebrew knowledge. Activities are conducted in both English and Hebrew.

“The fact that part of the group was Israeli gave an amazing point of view. I broke down my stereotypes and asked the Israelis what I wanted to know. I had never met an Ethiopian Jew before and being able to become good friends with them has been absolutely amazing...”

Liz Foreman, Niskayuna, NY

Judaism and Shabbat

Nesiya does not have a single point of view regarding Judaism or Israel. The program attracts participants and staff from Reform, Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist, secular and non-affiliated backgrounds, as well as others who have little or no Jewish background. Nesiya observes common denominators that are necessary for Jews of different backgrounds to live together and learn from one another. The program is strictly kosher, and no full group activities are conducted which violate traditional observance of Shabbat. Participants are encouraged to explore each other’s practices and beliefs, without feeling coerced to change their own. Prayer is always optional. Shabbat is a special time. We celebrate and explore Jewish rituals, spirituality and values. We welcome and close the Shabbat together. Participants create and organize many Shabbat experiences including prayer options and singing.

“I am looking at different kinds of Jews with different eyes - without judging them.”

D’vir Gezuntheit, Jerusalem Israel

Community Building

Participants and staff build a dynamic community that values both independence and belonging. In a group of North Americans and Israelis who differ greatly from one another, individuals feel comfortable questioning others and expressing themselves, while participating in the development of a community.

“I learned to respect people who are different than me, and still be able to stand up for myself. Living in this community allowed me to experience how different people get along with each other and how to create a community where everyone takes part.”

Carmel Avrahami, Efrat, Israel

Creative Study

Several times each week, participants and staff engage in creative study of both traditional and modern texts. We explore the relevance of Jewish culture through dialogue, personal stories, theater improv, and other creative activities.

“I studied texts for the first time with people who have very different views from mine. I have been studying Jewish texts since I was in first grade, but never in this way.”

Leah Dickstein, Teaneck, NJ

Fun, Recreation, and Free Time

Being on Nesiya is fun as well as challenging. While the program is highly structured, free time is provided every day, usually during the afternoon or evening at the base residence. Participants can rest, write letters, or enjoy a range of activities including swimming, sports, or just hanging out with friends.

See our Summer Program page for more information…

Apply Now!