The recipients of the American Israel Gap Year Association’s (AIGYA) inaugural Rosina Korda Gap Year Scholarship were revealed in surprise ceremonies for each of the three winners this month.
The winners are Leora Lalezari, a student at YULA Girls High School, Calev Knopf of Valley Torah High School and Rory Meyerson of Yeshiva High School of Arizona.
“The joy, fellowship and surprise among the teachers and classmates was apparent during the announcements when AIGYA and Korda family representatives announced the winners,” an AIGYA press release said.
“This scholarship reflects Mrs. Korda’s deep love of Judaism and connection to Israel,” AIGYA founder and Executive Director Phyllis Folb said in the release.
AIGYA, a Los Angeles-based organization that produces the largest Israel gap year fair on the West Coast and the only cross-denominational fair in the country, made the scholarship available to all 2018 fair attendees.
Two winners will take part in in-depth Torah learning and the third will pursue a career and a language-focused Israel gap year program, AIGYA said.
A $5,000 tuition voucher, donated collectively by the extended Korda family, will go toward each of the respective programs the winning students chose to attend.
“As we say at the Passover seder, if AIGYA had only helped us to select a program for my son, it would have been enough for us,” said Charles Meyerson, who traveled with his son, Rory, to the Los Angeles fair from Arizona. “As it turns out, God repaid our efforts in traveling from Arizona many times over with Rory’s win.”
The 2019 AIGYA Israel Gap Year Fair will be held on Nov. 21.