Last week marked the beginning of the Spring 2021 semester at the Arava Institute. Twenty-six participants from Israel and Palestine arrived and will hopefully soon be joined by additional international participants who are currently still unable to travel. The students and interns spent their first few days getting to know each other, as well as the local community and nature. They also already had an opportunity to delve into intensive workshops of the Environmental Leadership Seminar and the Peace-Building Leadership Seminar.

Restricted by the global and national COVID-19 regulations, class sizes this semester will be limited, and classes are currently being recorded and/or broadcasted live to those who have still not arrived on campus. We are especially excited to offer two new courses this semester:

  • “Climate Change in the Middle East and Post-Oil,” taught by professor Dan Rabinowitz, examines the impact climate change already has on the region, the consequences that might ensue as global warming advances further in the future and the potential of the region to turn from being part of the problem to becoming part of the solution.
  • “Statistical Reasoning for Environmental Scientists,” taught by Dr. Noah Morris, aims to introduce students involved in environmental science to essential tools of statistical reasoning and an ability to understand data. The course does not aim to introduce complex mathematical methods of statistical analysis but rather familiarize students with a critical way of thinking about statistics and data.

We are also happy to welcome our alumna Lindsey Zemler back at the Institute as facilitator of the Environmental Leadership Seminar, as well as Shirin Najar from Neve Shalom who is joining the Peace-Building Leadership Seminar facilitation team.

We wish our students, interns, faculty and staff a great semester, and look forward to watching them build their community on campus!

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