All blog posts are by University of Michigan students who have participated in a CGIS program. The following blogs are students studying abroad in Israel and Palestine.
Isabella reflects on her spring term in Israel and Palestine
Before I arrived in Israel/Palestine, I wasn’t more concerned about the possibility of experiencing harassment from men due to my gender more than I am on a daily basis in the United States. I was also confident knowing that I would be traveling with a group that was nearly all woman, as we could rely on each other for support and backup if necessary. I’m happy to be able to say that I had no negative experiences during my three weeks in Israel/Palestine as a result of sexual harassment, violence, or anything of the sort. Everyone I met was incredibly polite and kind—arguably more so than in the United States, particularly in Palestinian spaces—and though a woman on the street took me aside in Tel Aviv and warned me to “be careful” of men while I was there, I experienced no reasons to exercise more than a reasonable amount of daily caution and awareness when it came to gender.
Vivian reflects on her spring term in Israel and Palestine
Tomorrow, I’m leaving to go on my study abroad program. I fly out of JFK on Monday, and I’ll be landing in Tel Aviv the next day. My program is the Global Connections Course for Israel and Palestine, and we will be studying conflict and coexistence on the ground. I don’t have a lot of information about this program, but I’m optimistic that I will learn things about both myself and the conflict. For the first week, we’re traveling around Israel and the West Bank. The remaining two weeks will be in home stays in Sakhnin, which we’ve been told is an Arab city within Israel. Additionally, at the end of the program I will be taking a side trip to Paris, France. I’ll be out of the United States for a total of 30 days.