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Israel Scholarships

For Your Israel Trip

Needs and non-needs based scholarships available.

Deadline for all applications: April 30, 2019

Get FREE Money for a Trip to Israel!

Eligibility Rules for Israel Scholarships



Residency Requirement: (must meet one of the following categories)

  • Be a dependent Jewish student with parents or legal guardians residing in Western Pennsylvania as permanent residents of Pittsburgh and areas served by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, at the
    time of application.
  • Students attending out of state colleges or boarding schools are eligible if their parents' or guardians' permanent residence is in the areas mentioned above.
  • Be a young adult, not claimed as a dependent on parental tax returns, residing in Western Pennsylvania as a permanent resident of Pittsburgh and areas served by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, at
    the time of application.

Eligibility by Age:

  • Teens in 9th grade or above, and young adults through age 27, are eligible to apply for scholarships. Exceptions may be made for pre-teens on a case-by-case basis.

Repeat Applicants:

  • Priority consideration is given to first time visitors.
  • Repeat applications, up to a maximum of three trips, are considered but each trip must be for a different experience or program; scholarships will not be awarded for the same program in more than one year.

Length of Stay:

  • A Minimum 1-week stay in Israel is required, with priority and a full non-need scholarship going to trips that are at least 3 weeks or 21 days long. Funding amounts for one-week long trips will be considered on a case by case basis.

Eligible Programs:

  • Programs must be by an organization offering supervision, travel and/or study.
  • Scholarship is NOT available for family trips.
  • College, high school, summer work-study program or Kibbutz Ulpan programs are appropriate.
  • University and graduate students applying for MASA scholarships will be considered for Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh Israel Scholarships, based on availability of funds.
  • Consideration for special student programs not otherwise meeting the requirements herein are subject to approval of the Committee.

Scholarship Award Amounts and Stipulations:

  • Scholarship amounts will vary depending on the length of a trip.
    • Day School Trips: $1300
    • One-week trips will be decided on a case by case basis
    • March of the Living: $1300
    • 21 days & over 3 weeks: $2200
  • In the event that a 3 week or 21 day trip costs less than the full scholarship allotment of $2200.00, the award will be determined by the committee.
  • The need-based scholarship award is from $0 to $3000.00 depending on demonstrated need.
  • Scholarship funds are sent to the program or trip provider, not to individuals.
  • Commitment to complete the program is required. If a trip is cancelled by the provider or if an applicant does not go, applicants must notify the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh ISRAEL SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM of the cancellation so that the scholarship money may be refunded in full. If an applicant leaves leave his/her program before its completion, s/he must notify the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh ISRAEL SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM so that funds can be returned to
    them pro-rated.

Requirements for the Need-Based Scholarship


  • Completion of all non-need-based scholarship requirements as outlined above;
  • Completion of the need-based portion of the online application;
  • Submission of most recent tax return



Scholarship Application Instructions


  • Complete the online application located at; you must create an account with a log-in and password and complete the eligibility quiz in order to access the application. See detailed instructions below.*
  • The online form will require the applicant's and one parent's or guardian's signature; contact information for two references from a Rabbi, youth advisor, teacher, or other non-related adult; an uploaded acceptance letter or registration receipt from the program; and completed tax returns if applying for a need-based scholarship.
  • Attendance by all applicants at an Israel Scholarship Night at the Jewish Federation is required to complete the application. Prescribed dates are listed on the application form and applicants must choose one date to complete the application. Parents are strongly encouraged to attend this discussion with your teen applicants. During the discussion, applicants will have an opportunity to meet other teens going to Israel, discuss their connections to Israel, and learn about the work of the Jewish Federation.
  • Need-Based Interviews
    One-on-one need-based interviews are no longer required but in the online form need-based applicants may request a one-on-one interview if they wish to have one.

*Detailed Application Instructions

  1. Applications are submitted via the Federation Grantmaking Portal.
  2. Please choose the sign-up button at the bottom right corner of the screen and create your profile and password – PLEASE NOTE: This profile should be in the name of the APPLICANT/STUDENT/TEEN, not the parent.
  3. We strongly recommend that this application be completed together with both child/student and parent/legal guardian.
  4. Once you are logged into your new account, please complete the eligibility quiz, underneath the “IMPORTANT NOTICE” that you must read.
  5. When completing the quiz, you will be ask what grant you are applying for today – choose “Israel Scholarships.” Please DO NOT choose any other grant, as the Israel Scholarship is the ONLY grant we offer for Israel teen travel.
  6. Once you have completed the quiz, you will be prompted back to your home screen. Please scroll down and choose the BLUE BUTTON that says “View Applications.”
  7. Under your applications table, you will see Israel Scholarship Program listed  - at the end of the table, under “Actions,” please choose the CREATE SUBMISSIONS button, which will prompt you to the actual application.
  8. This will prompt you to the “application round” page with your list of TASKS: please fill out the “Israel Scholarship Program Application” in full.
  9. If you plan on also applying for need-based funds, when you are asked in the application if you want to apply for need-based aid, please choose YES. You will need to complete the second task, “Need-based Application Form – Israel Scholarship Program.” After completing this/these prerequisite tasks, you will be able to upload your acceptance letter from the Israel travel program you plan to attend. PLEASE NOTE – you will be asked to upload tax documents if you submit a Need-based Israel Scholarship Application.
  10. Once you complete your application and choose the SUBMIT button, you will receive confirmation of your submission and further notification from our Israel Scholarship Program Director.
  11. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Debbie Swartz at 412-992-5208 or

Teens and young adults


Find the Right Program!

Local Programs with Israel trips

Youth Movement Programs




Pluralistic Youth Movements

  • BBYO
  • Young Judaea
  • International MASA
    Israel is a funding partnership between the Jewish Federations of North America, the government of Israel, the Jewish Agency for Israel and its partners, and Keren HaYesod. Go to to get information about more than 200 programs and grants.


18-19 Jewish Federation Israel Scholarship Night Dates

All scholarship applicants are required to attend a group program with other applicants at the Federation. The goal of the session is for the applicants and their parents to learn about the work of the Jewish Federation, share their expectations for the trip and ask any questions.


All sessions are at 7:30 pm
at the Jewish Federation Building
2000 Technology Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15219

December 13, 2018
February 21, 2019
April 24, 2019
May 21, 2019


All scholarship applicants are required to attend the Jewish Federation Israel Scholarship Night. Parents are also strongly encouraged to attend. Applicants must choose one of these dates on the online application here. All sessions will begin at 7:30 pm.


The Israel Scholarship Program is funded by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Annual Campaign, with additional funding for need-based scholarships funded by The Stanley z"l and Flo Mae Moravitz Israel Scholarship Endowment Fund of The Jewish Community Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh. The Passport to Israel Program is funded by the Sholom Comay Family Endowment Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.

Debbie Swartz

Israel & Overseas Planning Associate
(412) 992-5208

Still Have a Question?

Contact Debbie Swartz for more information.

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