Exploration, Leadership and Innovation (ELI) Gap-Year Program

Exploration, Leadership and Innovation (ELI) Gap-Year Program

  • About
  • Curriculum
  • Application Requirements
  • Costs & Funding
  • Contact
Registration is closed for:
Fall 2024

Admissions will open in December 2023


Program Start:

  • 2024-2025


Program Length:

The curriculum is designed to span an entire year (10 months, August 2024-May 2025); however, students may apply for a single semester, either in the fall or spring (August 2024 or January 2025)



$14,000 (single semester) or $28,000 (double semester). Includes: housing, insurance, all program-related tours, excursions, & activities, and full academic credit


Admissions Requirements:

Recent high school graduates with a minimum GPA of at least 3.0 (80/100)

Application Deadline:


Admissions for Fall 2024 will open in December 2023




For more information, contact gapintl@tauex.tau.ac.il

Exploration, Leadership and Innovation (ELI) Gap-Year Program

This college-preparatory program offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for rich academic immersion, leadership training, and extracurricular activities in an environment centering on engagement with Jewish culture and the Startup Nation. 


Program Overview:


The Exploration, Leadership, and Innovation (ELI) program is for you if you’re an outstanding high school graduate who – before embarking on your college career – would like to explore university life and enhance your academic, leadership and entrepreneurial skills in a world-class environment that nurtures understanding and connection to Jewish life and community. The program is uniquely designed to equip you with an invaluable toolbox that will serve you throughout your college years and wherever life leads.

ELI integrates academic excellence with field trips, service-learning projects, group bonding and other immersive experiences, including networking and mentorship opportunities both within Israel’s Startup Nation and with global experts across Israel’s political, cultural, media, business and technology landscapes. Expect to begin your term with intensive Hebrew classes at Tel Aviv University’s (TAU’s) multi-level Ulpan, and to engage with the wider Jewish and Israeli community as they explore the country.

You must take a minimum of three for-credit courses during your time in the program and participate in workshops centered on TAU’s areas of expertise, such as cybersecurity and artificial intelligence.  


Program Highlights:


For-credit courses, workshops, and programming revolve around five thematic areas:

  • Israel and the Middle East

Delve into the complexities of Israeli society, politics, and culture while gaining a comprehensive understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and broader geopolitical dynamics in the Middle East. Interact with TAU’s renowned experts and with influential public figures; participate in meaningful service learning across Israeli society; and join immersive tours.


  • Jewish Peoplehood

Explore Jewish history, tradition, and heritage with hands-on learning and service at the ANU Museum of Jewish Peoplehood. Develop leadership skills through meetings with prominent leaders and actively engage with diverse groups across Israel.


  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation

TAU, a driving force behind the Startup Nation phenomenon, is consistently ranked among the world’s top ten universities for producing successful entrepreneurs. Gain a foundational entrepreneurial skillset and immerse yourself in Tel Aviv’s vibrant startup ecosystem.


  • Environment and Sustainability

Examine the critical role individuals can play in advancing the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Explore Israel’s innovative solutions in energy and ecology to address contemporary challenges; learn how environmental and climate issues impact the Middle East; and join field trips and volunteer activities.


  • The Best of Science and Human Thought

For STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) students, engage with labs run by top TAU researchers across various scientific fields, including cancer research, robotics, neuroscience, and astrophysics. For humanities and social sciences students, immerse yourself in close reading, writing, and critical thinking activities and explore the finest texts in philosophy and literature.


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