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Hannah Turner '13 exploring Israel.
Hannah Turner '13 exploring Israel.

Teaching in Israel

During her internship this summer in Israel, psychology major Hannah Turner ’13 has had to adjust to a different culture. “The most striking difference between Israeli culture and what I'm used to,” Turner says, “is the accepted presence of war. Everyone my age wears an army uniform and service is mandatory from [age] 18-20, so college students in Israel are two years older than their American counterparts. Driving through Haifa with coworkers, they mention ‘that cafe on the corner there’ and ‘that restaurant you ate at last week’ as sites of past bombings. The topic begins casually, but regardless of who I'm talking to, they begin to discuss the constant threat of living in Israel [and how they are] always expecting another war.”

Turner is learning about Israeli culture and society and helping to empower children with disabilities through an internship funded by Haverford’s Center for Peace and Global Citizenship.

She is working with Israel Elwyn, an organization that seeks to integrate the children into their local communities. During her internship, Turner is working in the kid’s classrooms and helping the staff to review the children’s treatment progress. “Every day I learn something new about the children and their abilities and disabilities from teachers, aides, parents and therapists,” says Turner.

She was attracted to the internship for several reasons. Turner wants to pursue a career in speech therapy, and the internship gives her a chance to explore a related field. Additionally, the internship allows her to explore both her Jewish heritage and her interest in Israeli culture and politics. She is also working hard to learn Hebrew, and she notes that the children have been particularly receptive to her attempts to learn the language.

“The 8-year-old girl whose family I'm now living with has made it her mission to teach me Hebrew,” says Turner.

--Stephen W Handlon ’13

The ramp from Magill Library with Ryan Gym and Sharpless Hall in the background.

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