so in August i met this guy who works in the Prime Minister’s office; he made aliyah 5 years ago from the US and served in the army and is now working his way up the tangled web of Israeli government. i got his card back then and called him today…
anyways, he is pretty young, i dont think he’s above thirty… i think since he’s still young and fairly new at the game, (though not really naive) i think he’s more willing to talk to me, advise me, he’s willing to help me get started because he’s not too full of himself yet – he’s still enthusiastic – i think that’s the real trick at making government connections: get in with the younger lower-level people, who are more enthusiastic, and then later on when they’re even higher, they’ll already know you.
first most important thing: he was stressing how crucial learning hebrew is, obviously, right? but i need to be taking it very seriously, because i won’t get a goverment job without it, and if i don’t do it right away, it won’t happen… and since i’m not serving in the army, i’m already missing out on slang and vernacular… i really don’t wanna go to ulpan at all, but he is totally right, i know it and knew it, so i will have to brainwash myself into believing in it and wanting it, like with working at my tedious job now.
the second most important think to do is to get a masters – BAs don’t cut it anymore, which is true in the US too. and i’m doing that anyway. Bar Ilan University, Fall 2005, Conflict Management & Negotiation.
finally, he advised that i start out in the small government ministries, like education or agriculture, where they are not as involved with hasbara, publicity, or foreign affairs because they are more likely to have open positions. government jobs are hard to get in israel because they only need a certain ammount of manpower in such a small government. also, they don’t have the resources the US has.
obviously, i work my way up from there, establish connections and enter the international realm. i could get lucky or it couldtake a few years. but his guy also offered to take my resume and keep in touch so we can meet up when i get there and he’ll see if he can get me a job where he is now – the Prime Minister’s office, or maybe even the Foreign Ministry or IDF Spokesperson office.
probably the most important piece of advice he gave me in all was: aliyah can be successful, it can even be not-so-hard, if you always remember that the country does not owe you anything. you are not special because you made aliyah. a lot of people return back because they believed that and were disappointed at the lack of red carpets. the country will survive without you. the country doesn’t owe you anything. you owe the country. you owe it to israel to get a job, get married, and build a Jewish family in the Jewish state.