On the fourth day of our Study Trip in Israel, we visited one of the oldest and most historic cities in the world, Jerusalem. We departed early in the morning to visit Mobileye, the global leader in the development of vision technology for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and autonomous vehicles headquartered in Jerusalem. The US giant Intel Corp. acquired Mobileye in 2017 for 15.3bn, marking the largest purchase of an Israeli tech company. Gaining valuable insights into the future of safe and autonomous driving prompted students to ask questions facing the firm on relevant topics such as cybersecurity, safety, ethics, and industry competitors.
The second part of the day consisted of a guided city tour through the old city of Jerusalem. Our Norwegian tour guide Ruth took as on the hilltop of Mount of Olives which delivers beautiful views over the city. The spot is associated with many events in Jesus’s life including the ascending to Heaven. The students then followed the 14 stations of the cross while exploring the narrow alleys of the old city ending where Jesus was supposedly laid in the tomb and covered in incense.
Before taking the bus back to Tel Aviv, the study group had the opportunity to soak in the unique atmosphere surrounding the Western Wall which symbolises the holiest place where jews are permitted to pray.
The trip showed us that peaceful coexistence between different religions is possible. We are happy to have witnessed this truly amazing place together with our study peers.
Day four of
our study trip started off nicely with a bright sun and a temperature similar
to what we usually only experience during the summer months in Switzerland. The
very first item on today’s agenda did not require us to embark on a long
journey, since we were given the opportunity to enjoy a highly interesting and
insightful lecture by Ohad Meyuhas from the company Stratasys on 3D-printing in
a conference room at our hotel. During his lecture, Ohad not only told us facts
about the firm and the various processes that can be used to print objects, but
also gave interesting anecdotes about how a frog inspired the creation of
3D-printing or even how Minnesota is not a pleasurable place to go to. In a
subsequent Q&A session, we were then able to ask Ohad our various questions
regarding 3D-printing and related subjects.
After the lecture on the highly promising technology, we boarded our bus in order to leave for the Museum of the Jewish People. As we have learned from our lecturer Dr. Leslie Broudo-Mitts during our visit at the Tel Aviv University, one of the major reasons why Israel is considered a start-up nation with great companies and entrepreneurial spirit is that people are able to adapt to changes quickly. Our flexibility was tested as well when our dear bus driver Hagi informed us about a power outage at the museum and therefore our planned museum tour was now cancelled. Inspired by the Israeli can-do attitude and high degree of adaptability, we quickly changed plans and decided to instead spend the afternoon in the old city of Tel Aviv, Jaffa. Luckily, our bus driver turned out to be an exceptional tour guide as well. Hagi led us from the historic port of Jaffa through an artistic village over a wishing bridge to a view point providing us with a beautiful view of Tel Aviv, all while sharing interesting facts and stories about the city’s history. We were also able to fully indulge in Middle Eastern delicacies in Jaffa due to the old city being filled with small, vibrant cafes and restaurants offering various tasty dishes such as Falafel or Shawarma.
evening, we were honored to be received at the residence of the ambassador of
Switzerland in Israel. Upon our arrival, we were greeted by several members of
the team at the embassy as well as refreshing beverages and tasty finger food.
Following the reception, a presentation was held by Anna-Lise Cattin Hennin,
the Deputy Head of Mission, as well as by David Biegeleisen, who is the Innovation
Advisor at the embassy. Topics such as the political system of Israel as well
as the country’s challenges and opportunities were addressed, including the
role of Switzerland in all those aspects. The presentation also offered us new
insights into the specific tasks embassy staff fulfils, such as planning and
coordinating events involving Swiss and Israeli companies for an intercultural
exchange. After, we were given the opportunity to ask questions, followed by a
delicious dinner and interesting conversations with the embassy members.
It was an exciting day with some unexpected turns but a lot of new insights gained and experiences made. Today marks the half-time of our study trip, and we hope it continues to be as amazing as it has been so far! We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Ruedi Büchi from Switzerland Global Enterprise, who helped organize major parts of the program of our study trip and happily joined us for multiple activities.
The day began with another healthy breakfast at the hotel Tal by the Beach. Filled with a lot of energy, we drove to the University of Tel Aviv by bus. There, we had the privilege to attend a lecture about the ongoing transformation of the Israeli economy by Dr. Leslie Broudo-Mitts. After this highly informative presentation, we gathered and had the possibility to discover the campus with Sam.
Around noon we had a light lunch on the university campus. Ready for the afternoon, we took the bus to our next stop: The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya. This is the largest private university in Israel and is only 25 years old. First, we had a short introduction from the head of Adelson School of Entrepreneurship, Mr. Amir Lewkowitz, who explained the entrepreneurship programs at IDC. Thereafter, a tour of the media lab was given to us and we had the chance to test the developed robots and toys. Additionally, a former student of the university gave some insights about the study programs and the student life at this special university. In the end, we enjoyed a guided and interesting tour around the campus of IDC by Amir Lewkowitz.
Having gathered many information throughout the day, we drove back to the hotel. As an optional activity, our bus driver gave us the possibility to gain more insights into the Israeli culture by stopping at the Carmel Market in the city center.
The second day of the study trip for the International Management Program started with a visit to the HQ of WIX.com Ltd. The company is a cloud-based web development platform that allows every customer to create their own website very easily. The representative of WIX.com first showed us the HQ right at the beach of Tel Aviv.
There upon we visited the conference and gained some insight into the company and the innovative drive of the company. The representative was very eager to answer any questions not only related to the company itself but also regarding Israel’s culture.
Our second stop of the day took us to one of the leading cyber security companies in the world Check Point Software Technologies. The building was highly secured and even visiting the bathroom had to be overlooked by one of the employees. We were introduced to the company in a fairly futuristic setting and surprisingly our presenter, Raphael Bitterli introduced himself in Swiss-German as he is Swiss.
We gained an insight into the easiness of hacking and its various forms as well as measures to prevent being hacked. Most of us were extremely surprised and will definitely give cyber security a second thought. Since most of us were close to starvation we were very thankful for the apéro provided at the end of our company visist.
The last activity of our second day in Tel Aviv took us back to the city center where we enjoyed a guided tour of the city’s infamous white city.
Our guide was a history graduate specialized in Bauhaus architecture and gave us a lot of interesting facts about how history is reflected in Tel Aviv’s architecture.
It was an exhausting but interesting day and we are looking forward to the rest of the week.
The International Management cohort under the guidance of Program Director BSc IM, Dr. Michael Jan Kendzia, and Deputy Head Competence Team Luxury Management, International Business, Maya Gadgil, are located in Tel Aviv, Israel. This year 34 students were lucky enough to get a spot on the highly desired study trip. The students were informed at a briefing in the hotel lobby about this week’s program.
After checking into the Tal by the Beach Hotel, the students enjoyed the breath-taking view on the beach from the rooftop and had the opportunity to gain some first insights of the marvellous city. Later the same night, an informal get-together was organised in a close bar. After a warm welcome, by the one and only Mr. Dominik Suter, the cohort enjoyed the delicious foods and drinks offered by the bar.