Philadelphia Jewish Voice
JANUARY 31, 2021
StandWithUs hosted the “Israel in Focus” international Zoom conference. For ten local high school and college students this was the culmination of a year-long internship or fellowship with StandWithUs. A diverse forum of experts, including Israeli Arabs, discussed Israel, antisemitism, and the Abraham Accords. International speakers discussed how various anti-Israel campaigns work, and strategies to deal with them.
High School and College student leaders from around the world had an opportunity to connect via Zoom to share the challenges they face and how they have overcome them. The StandWithUs Leventhal High School Interns from Philadelphia are Lital Abergel from Kohelet Yeshiva High School, Blake Fox from Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy, Alexa Jakubowitz from Upper Dublin High School, Matthew Khelmer from Council Rock High School South, Abi Schonberger from Lower Merion High School, Alex Forgosh from Parkland High School. Student leaders Gabi Leon from Lower Moreland High School and Miriam Worley from Hatboro-Horsham High School participated as well. Rebecca Wilson from Jack M Barrack Hebrew Academy is the teen leadership council member. Allison Gorokhovsky was the 2020-21 StandWithUs Emerson Fellow at University of Pennsylvania. Professionals from Hillel International, the Israel on Campus Coalition, and Avi Gordon, the Executive Director of Alums for Campus Fairness, discussed trends they are seeing happening on college campuses.
The parents of some of these high school and college students had an opportunity to discuss their experiences and concerns with Roz Rothstein, founder and CEO of StandWithUs. Attendees heard from and engaged with experts who have successfully collaborated with churches, artists, legislators, students, faculty, and more to overcome BDS, antisemitism and other challenges.
The conference concluded with a discussion about the Abraham Accords. Omar Al Busaidy, from the United Arab Emirates, a Fulbright Scholar, Best Selling author and member of the US-UAE Public Affairs Committee, was one of the featured speakers. He was joined by Fleur Hasan Nahoum, the Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem. Natan Sharansky, Gil Troy, Neil Lazarus, Yosef Haddad, and Hussein Aboubakr were featured speakers. The conference ended on a high note with stunning performance from piano virtuoso Mona Golabek.
Read the article here.