Opinions & Commentary

Blending passion for business and Israel’s cutting-edge sector

By Joel Hemsi

Joel Hemsi is a junior at Brandeis University, where she is a project manager for Tamid and its New England regional director. Joel Hemsi is a junior at Brandeis University, where she is a project manager for Tamid and its New England regional director. As college student leaders from all over the country walked into TAMIDcon in their finest business-casual attire, the energy in the room filled. Tamid Group staff checked-in those arriving; the new chapter orientation wrapped up; and students from older chapters rushed to get their customized Tamid pad folios and shiny badges.

This was TAMIDcon: a 25-hour-long, annual and national (now global) Tamid Conference bringing together student leaders from each of Tamid’s 46 college chapters that offer students experiential learning through business in Israel. Throughout the academic year, Tamid members engage in interactive classes, consult with Israeli companies, have internship experiences in Israel, manage investment portfolios with Israeli companies, and more.

The conference is an opportunity to “jump start” our semester. It aims to gather four board members from each chapter across the globe, to discuss challenges at their respective chapters, and to communicate all of their experiences to Tamid staff and Tamid national student board.

And really, it is an abridged version of the Tamid fellowship, an opportunity to live and intern in Tel Aviv for eight weeks.

I was a fellow last year, attending at least 10 different networking and speaker events on a weekly basis. I built connections with the 221 other fellows this summer. Now, whomever we reach out to from the fellowship – about our chapter, personal professional goals, or with other questions – we know they will offer advice. I’ve already experienced this support first-hand – and the conference brought it to life. I met the increasing number of Tamid student leaders; ambitious, accomplished, and down-to-earth. We all shared our experiences from our chapters as we work to combine our passion for business with the dynamic Israeli landscape in this arena. I saw the ambitious structure of TAMIDcon align with the eagerness of students in attendance. They had assumed leadership positions at their respective chapters, and now it was time to share and collaborate with Tamid Nationals regarding next steps, and chapter operations.

TAMIDcon was about listening to and learning from the board members at other chapters and their experiences thus far. Each school is different and, therefore, each Tamid chapter is different. However, chapters may have similar challenges and can learn from others’ experiences.

In retrospect, I did not know the extent to which this organization would impact my college experience. My journey started Aug. 30, 2016, as a sophomore, walking around the Club Fair at Brandeis with a group of friends. I wasn’t looking for anything specific, but throughout my first year in college, I had continuously looked for clubs that had an active student membership. It was at that moment I approached the Tamid table, with four students pitching me one after the other. I was shocked, but also excited for what was to come. Upon getting accepted that semester, I realized the life-changing impact that Tamid could have on my life. So, I chased those opportunities wherever I could: whether it be stepping up at my chapter or joining the national leadership. Months after, I was accepted into the Tamid Fellowship, and this past summer I was selected to be the New England Regional Director for the 2017-2018 academic year. I am grateful to the Tamid staff for enabling such leadership opportunities to students my age. I am also eager to further develop connections among the chapters in the New England region this year. Together, we are engaging with and experiencing Israel in ways that blend the personal and professional, and bring deep value to our college experience.


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