Israel’s Consul General Farewells JNF-USA High School in Israel Students

Miami, Fl., June 16, 2021 — The 220 Florida students who set off from Miami International Airport to Israel to attend Jewish National Fund-USA’s (JNF-USA) Alexander Muss High School in Israel (High School in Israel) summer programs had a special visitor to send them on their way: Israeli Consul General in Florida Maor Elbaz.


In a statement, the Consul General shared some advice for the travelling students: “Visiting Israel is a life changing experience. Seize this opportunity. Use all your five senses because the holy land feels, looks, tastes, smells and sounds like no other.”


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The students will spend the next 4-6 weeks of their lives exploring 4,000 years of Jewish history and use the land of Israel as a living and breathing classroom, in addition to exciting service-learning opportunities that will bring them closer to the land and people of Israel.


High School in Israel Head of School Mark Shinar said: “What seemed, just a few months ago, to be the impossible is now a reality. Together, we will utilize every opportunity over the next 6 weeks to infuse within them a lifelong connection to the land and people of Israel. We know that our students are so excited to come, but we also know that they will leave forever changed, well poised to become Jewish leaders in their hometowns and in the world.”


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Students, parents, and staff were also thrilled to have Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber in attendance to see the students off on their journey.


Mayor Dan Gelber at the airport with Consul General Maor Elbaz


Florida JNF Israel Emissary Lieutenant Colonel (res.) Zohar Vloski said: “Coming to a significant and long-term educational program in Israel is the best and most significant way to get to know Israel up close directly and thus connect to our homeland, the Israeli family, Jewish values and identity. It is a relationship and a formative experience that will not be forgotten for a lifetime, as there can be nothing closer to Israel than being in Israel.”


The 220 students will be attending a variety of summer programming, including JNF-USA’s Foundations Israel, Roots Israel, and the brand-new Your Way Israel program.


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South Miami Dade High School in Israel Chair Lisa James, whose son Ryan is among the participating students, said: “We are so excited for Ryan and 200 plus high schoolers from the United States to have this once in a lifetime opportunity to learn about Israel, its history, its role in world politics, and the effects of anti-Semitism on Jews around the world. A visit from the consul general is yet another example of the amazing opportunities High School in Israel is providing to create a memorable and life-altering summer experience that hopefully will influence future generations in positive and meaningful ways.”


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JNF-USA South Florida Executive Director Roni Raab added: “We are thrilled that so many students have chosen to go to Israel to spend a semester at AMHSI this summer.  Having Mr. Elbaz, the Consul General of Israel, in attendance during the official send-off emphasizes the importance of this moment, and the unwavering connection between Jewish National Fund-USA and the State of Israel.”


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About Jewish National Fund-USA

JNF-USA is the leading philanthropic organization for Israel that supports critical environmental and nation building activities in Israel’s north and south. Through its One Billion Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade, JNF-USA is developing new communities in the Galilee and Negev, connecting the next generation to Israel, and creating infrastructure and programs that support ecology, individuals with special needs, and heritage site preservation.