About 14,000 Birthright Israel participants from nearly 900 universities and colleges in North America are expected to land in Israel in the coming months, as part of Birthright’s 2022 Summer season. The flights, which begin on May 1st mark Birthright Israel’s long-awaited return after a series of suspensions since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Birthright expects to bring about 19,000 young adults from North America during this summer.
Birthright Campus Trips are a unique opportunity for North American students to go on a life-changing trip to Israel with their college friends and meet new people from their campus. The trips are usually timed to coincide with the school’s winter or summer breaks.
Colleges with the largest number of Birthright Campus Trip participants include University of Michigan - Ann Arbor (585 students); University of Florida (506 students); and University of Wisconsin – Madison (424 students).
“After a long hiatus, we are excited to bring back so many students from North America to these important and exciting tours to Israel. Many of these students are coming from college and university campuses where incidences of anti-Semitism are increasing, leaving them feeling beleaguered and isolated,” said Birthright Israel CEO Gidi Mark. “We know that after going on a Birthright trip, these students feel more confident,“ he added.
Zachary Lech, 20, a Harvard student studying government, will travel to Israel on an upcoming campus trip. Having grown up in a small town, Lech said that he had not experienced being part of “a vibrant Jewish community” before arriving at Harvard. He hopes to further his Jewish involvement through Birthright. “I went on a short trip to Israel when I was 10, but this is my first time really seeing the country. I'm beyond excited to join the amazing people I've met here at Harvard on a trip to Israel to see for myself what Jewish life can really look like, and to explore my culture,” he said.