100 Alumni We Love

Reflections on Our Time at HU

By sisters Dawn Bercovitch and Marni Appleby, Toronto

Dawn Bercovitch and Marni ApplebyDawn: When I was 14 years old, I went on a trip to Israel with my family. It was then I heard about the year overseas at Hebrew University and decided I wanted to go. In 1990, I was a student on the Mt. Scopus campus in what was one of the best years of my life. I grew and learned in every way – academically, socially and emotionally.

Living in Israel itself was a highlight. Each and every day was a new adventure. I met people from all over and still keep in touch with some of them. Just last month, a friend from California came in for a visit. Weekends were spent traveling and hiking all over Israel or being invited to stay in the homes of new friends. I was taking a class about the Old City of Jerusalem, focusing on the four quarters and the class actually took place in the Old City!

I never would have guessed that 20 years later, I would be celebrating my daughter’s Bat Mitzvah in a beautiful garden on Mt Scopus at Hebrew University.

Marni: When I was 12 years old, my family traveled to Israel to celebrate my Bat Mitzvah.  At the end of the trip, we dropped my oldest sister Dawn off at Mount Scopus to start her year at Hebrew university. I remember thinking how lucky she was to get to spend a whole year living in Israel and I couldn’t wait for it to be my turn.  Eight years later, I returned to Israel for the best year of my life.

That was the year my real love of Israel began. I met the most amazing people from all over the world, traveled all over the country and found a deep love of Judaism and Zionism which is still part of me today.