Bar-Ilan University strives to provide its students with an outstanding education, and create an environment where any student, regardless of their background, has the opportunity to excel. It is for this that reason Talya Herring, 21, chose to study at Bar-Ilan.
Born and raised in San Diego, California, Talya decided to come to Israel for a year after graduating high school, and study in Midreshet Moriah, a Jerusalem-based seminary. Soon after arriving here, however, she fell in love with Israel and with its people. Instinctively, Talya knew she wanted to be a part of the place she now calls home.
"I grew up in a traditional house hold. My family loves and supports Israel in every way, though making Aliyah was never forced upon us. Both my parents spent time in Israel when they were younger.
So, I guess you can say I grew up with the 70's version of Israel in my house; let’s just say I’m no stranger to Israeli folk songs and dances…”
In the summer of 2013, after completing her year in seminary, Talya officially became an Olah. She joined the Israel National Service (the Israeli parallel of IDF service for observant young women), and moved to Ofakim, a development town in southern Israel, where she volunteered for a year at ALEH Negev, a rehabilitation village for young adults with disabilities. Talya spent her second year as a National Service volunteer in Haifa, as a tour guide for Shelach, a program teaching Israeli high school students about the history of Israel.
With three years of exploring and integrating in Israel (in Hebrew!) under her belt, Talya was ready to embark on her next adventure and fulfill her lifelong dream of becoming a lawyer. When looking at universities, she knew she wanted a well-respected institution, with top academics, where a new Olah such as she would never fall through the cracks. Bar-Ilan fit the bill to a tee.
"Law is a competitive degree and I knew that I’d need more support than my native Israeli classmates would. When I looked at other universities, I noticed that they had created an environment of 'every man for himself.' But at Bar-Ilan, I immediately felt that classmates were more than willing to help each other out, whether it was sharing notes or creating study groups.”
Talya says that there are many other Anglo students at BIU. ”They built a very close- knit, active community, so I knew I would never feel alone here, even though technically, my family is overseas. BIU is a perfect fit for me, socially and academically.”
"Bar-Ilan has amazing professors, a strong law faculty, and a chill-out student body. From day one of interacting with BIU, I have only had positive experiences. They want me to succeed. It’s as simple as that. I look forward to starting my degree here and to achieving my dream of becoming a Lawyer in the country that I love so much."