A Student Program in Affiliation with USC and CUNY Hillels
June 24th – July 3rd, 2013
Established in October 2007, Germany Close Up – American Jews Meet Modern Germany is an initiative created to enrich transatlantic dialogue and provide Jewish American students and young professionals in their twenties and early thirties with an opportunity to experience modern Germany up close and personally. A generous government scholarship (a part of the ERP Special Assets of the German Ministry for Economics and Technology) covers more than two thirds of participation costs, which leaves a participation fee of $840 per person. At the same time, Germany Close Up is an independent body regarding the organization and contents of its programs. The purpose of the program is to allow participants to gain their own perspective on Germany through individual experience.
The trips are designed to expose participants to a range of aspects that make up modern Germany, with both the past and present in focus. Every Germany Close Up trip includes a number of activities, tours, and meetings. All trips cover issues related to Germany’s reflection on its past and its efforts to deal with the memory of the Holocaust and the Nazi horror up to this very day. They also consider its transformation in the last 60 years into a modern, reunified, and democratic country in the heart of the European Union, home to the third-fastest growing Jewish community worldwide. Observing Shabbat and keeping a kosher diet are both possible on all Germany Close Up trips.
The 10 day program between the 24th of June and the 3rd of July will enable participants to experience Berlin’s multicultural life, visit sites such as a former concentration camp, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and the Jewish Museum in Berlin, and to experience other key historical sites and other cultural venues. They will meet with German opinion-makers from the academic and political spheres, representatives of grass root movements and the Jewish community, as well as German contemporaries. The role of Jewish voices in transatlantic relations will be explored as participants actively contribute to German-American dialogue.
The program will focus on the following topics:
- Berlin and united Germany
- The Holocaust and the Nazi Era including a visit to a former Concentration Camp
- Transatlantic/German-American relations (incl. a meeting with officials of the German Federal Foreign Office)
- Jewish Berlin, present and past (incl. the integration of new members of the Jewish community)
- Integration of new members of the Jewish community
- German-Israeli relations
Each participant is responsible for a fee of $840. This fee will be paid indirectly to Germany Close Up via a flight contribution. After acceptance to the program, each participant is expected to book their roundtrip airline ticket to Berlin with economy class. In most cases this expense will cover the $840 fee. If your air fare is lower than $840, you will be asked to pay Germany Close Up the difference. If your air fare is more than $840, you may be eligible for a flight reimbursement from Germany Close Up for the difference between $840 and your actual flight costs. Please note, however, that reimbursements have a maximum cap. For participants departing from NYC or Washington DC the maximum ticket cost Germany Close Up allows for is $1000. For participants departing from anywhere else in the United States or Canada the maximum ticket cost Germany Close Up allows for is $1300. This means you will receive a maximum reimbursement of $160/$460 ($1000/$1300 max ticket cost minus the $840 registration fee). This is to ensure the participation fee remains the same while participants may come from across the Unites States and Canada. Reimbursement will take place several weeks after the program’s conclusion and will be coordinated by Hillel CUNY.
Reimbursements will be made only when each student has completed their evaluations. Students are required to fully participate in the program to receive reimbursement. If participants leave the trip for any reason, they may not be reimbursed fully.
Once you have been accepted for the trip, we encourage you to begin researching flights ASAP due to the maximum reimbursement levels and the rising cost of airfares as the trip dates near.
Germany Close Up covers the following expenses in Germany: hotel accommodation in double rooms, most meals, transportation within Germany, admission fees and event tickets. The scholarship does not include tipping. Please keep in mind that you will need to pay around 50€ (roughly $75) for tips.
If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.
Application closes on April 11, 2013.
Please apply online at http://www.germanycloseup.de/index.php?option=com_breezingforms&Itemid=112 and be prepared to attach the documents listed below as a single pdf file (please no ZIP files). Please also send a copy of your attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org. The documents we require to complete your application are:
- An online application form
- A 1-2 page essay about your interest in the program
- A cover letter
- A resume
- One letter of recommendation