35 Haredi men begin a unique 18-month hi-tech training and apprenticeship program

June 18, 2020 by Lydia Weitzman
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Ravtech, a unique training/apprenticeship model that has been successfully integrating Haredi men into hi-tech since 2013, has just opened its eighth cohort in Jerusalem sponsored by JNF Australia.

Students at Ravtech

This, in spite of the challenging economic post-coronavirus outlook. Thirty-five of the brightest ultra-Orthodox minds, selected from hundreds of applications, will train as software developers and are expected to join the hi-tech workforce in late 2021. followed They have been guaranteed employment in software development

Ravtech has branches in Jerusalem and Bnei Brak, and is a unique one-stop-shop facility where married Talmudic students combine an 18-month software development training and internship program with daily Torah study while receiving a monthly stipend. All Ravtech graduates are guaranteed a minimum of two years employment, working on outsourced projects for companies such as Check Point, Intel, Amdocs, Elbit and Toga Networks (a Huawei company).

French-Israeli philanthropist and educator Rabbi David Leybel, in consultation with leading hi-tech figures, launched the Ravtech initiative in 2012 in response to the financial distress of Kollel students, in particular, those less-suited to full-time Torah study. Nearly 150 Ravtech graduates are now working in hi-tech, some of whom are supporting their families with monthly salaries of over NIS 30,000 while maintaining their religious lifestyle.

Ravtech training program director Aharon Safrai said: “We refuse to let the coronavirus economic crisis slow the positive momentum we have achieved at Ravtech. During lockdown, we even provided internet connection and computers to Ravtech graduates working from home. The opening of this new cohort is as much a leap of faith as was the Ravtech launch in 2013. We feel confident that these 35 students, like the hundred-plus Ravtech graduates before them, will gain the skills and the experience needed to support their families and contribute to Israel’s workforce and economy.”

CEO Miki Segal added: “It is an accepted fact that successfully integrating Haredi men into the workforce is a national economic interest, but this needs to be achieved with sensitivity and determination. We respect their lifestyle and bring them up to speed on everything a junior developer needs to know in a short time. When they finish the Ravtech combined training/apprenticeship program, they can work on complex technological projects and bring real value to our customers. However, to truly succeed, we need Israeli organizations from the private and public sectors to show faith in this initiative, hire our developers and become partners in this remarkable journey.”

Yechiel Rosenberg, 23, is married with one child from Bnei Brak and one of the 35 new students at Ravtech, was attracted by the mix of vocational training, continued Torah study, a monthly stipend and guaranteed employment:

He added: “I want to have a skill which will support my family and remain committed to Torah.”

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One Response to “35 Haredi men begin a unique 18-month hi-tech training and apprenticeship program”
  1. Aaron Fruchtman says:

    Hi this is Aaron Fruchtman, the Vice President of Ravtech’s training program, JBH. We feel honored to partner with the Australian Jewish Community by way of JNF Australia.

    https://www.jnf.org.au/project-items/jewish-brain-in-hightech-jbh/

    I am always available to answer any questions about the program. Please feel free to contact me at [email protected].

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