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Why I chose IDC Herzliya

Raphael Recanati International School – Your Future Awaits

Elishai Zeharya, 3rd year Business Administration student USA
Elishai Zeharya, 3rd year Business Administration student USA

After discontinuing my studies in another university and moving back home to Los Angeles, I was craving to discover the path that was meant for me. Over a period of diving deep into different industries such as the stock market, real estate, architecture, and automotive design, I couldn’t ignore the feeling that belonging somewhere was at least as important as deciding where to unleash my ambition. After contacting various schools in the US and Israel, I stumbled upon the words: “Raphael Recanati International School. Your Future Awaits.”

L-R: Aaron Morali- Austria, Kineret Benjamin- Venezuela, Shiri Lasman- Israel, Elishai Zeharya- USA

My decision to join IDC Herzliya was the most instinctive decision I’ve ever made. I vividly remember my first day on campus, when Professor Uriel Reichman, founder & president of IDC Herzliya, spoke the words “Here, students are our partners,” followed by Mr. Jonathan Davis, head of External Relations and president of the RRIS, who boldly proclaimed the university to be “the home of the innovative, humanistic Zionist capitalist, and the heartbeat of the future leadership of the State of Israel.” At that moment, I felt I had made the most important decision of my life, and I had made it correctly.

During my first year, I dedicated myself entirely to learning as many practical skills as were being offered in my curriculum. While volunteering for the International Marketing Department, I developed strong capabilities in website-building and public speaking through my courses, which I later took to the next level. By the end of my first year, I was building websites for businesses and had become the international marketing coordinator of the RRIS, where I further developed my public speaking abilities in front of over two thousand IDC campus visitors.

That summer, I decided to stretch myself to my limit, in order to take advantage of multiple opportunities that changed my life. I took part in IDC Co-Op, a program designed to position IDC students to find internships with startups and various companies, through which I interned in Powermat – the world’s first company to invent wireless chargers for devices. After learning their sales & business development strategy, I was given the responsibility of generating a leads database of their 120 biggest potential client companies in the UK — an eye-opening experience.

Alongside that, I became an ambassador of TalentSpace, a global networking organization; joined several programs in the Entrepreneurship Club and the Sales Club; and became the director of Marketing for Momentum Startup Accelerator, where I built a marketing team to rebrand and restructure the accelerator. A mentorship-driven, community-powered flagship entrepreneurship program within the IDC, Momentum had skyrocketed to become an icon for innovation. Receiving 80 applications from startup companies, the accelerator accepted the top 17 during my tenure, each of which I had worked directly with to develop marketing strategies and top-notch presentations for investors. At least 12 had raised capital, adding to the astounding NIS 31 million that had been raised by Momentum’s alumni since its inception six years ago.

While learning different disciplines from excellent professors who are experts in their field, I was determined to gain as much professional experience as possible and to maximize my time as an IDC student. After an internship, multiple fulfilling employment positions, taking part in many initiatives and conducting my own creative work on the side, my second year came to an end and I was faced with the decision that would change everything.

Finally feeling ready to take on a bigger challenge, I took my “leap of faith” and started my own company doing my newly discovered passion: writing top-quality English content and brand messaging for Israeli companies.

My third and final year in the RRIS brought with it opportunity beyond measure, resulting from my desire to take full advantage of the university’s value in the years beforehand. Having made tremendous progress and now working with many clients across the industries, I look back at my younger self and reflect on my decision to attend IDC.

Having accomplished so many of my goals during my time here, the greatest gift I was given as an IDC student is a home. As I had originally set out, I chose to spend three years of my life where I felt I’d belong. After meeting countless fascinating people from all over the world while experiencing astonishing personal and professional growth, I have come to an important realization as a soon-to-be IDC alumnus: being a part of an extraordinary community isn’t something that comes to an end when you walk down the aisle. In fact, it’s just the beginning.

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The author is a senior in Business Administration, Raphael Recanati International School, IDC Herzliya