For the first time, young Israeli-Americans from college campuses across North America will gather in Los Angeles for the week of January 30 to February 1, for the inaugural Mishelanu National Conference of the Israeli-American Council (IAC). Mishelanu is a national campus-based program that strengthens the identity of Israeli-American college students.
The conference, with the theme “Meet Your Past, Shape Your Future,” is aimed at nurturing Israeli-American college students’ emerging cultural & national identity and supporting Israeli-American campus leaders, especially in the face of critical challenges at colleges around the world.
Many of the community’s leaders will be addressing the conference participants, including philanthropist Sheldon Adelson, IAC National Chairman of the Board Shawn Evenhaim and Mishelanu co-founder Dadi Perlmutter speaking about the need for a strong Israeli-American community. Israel’s Consul-General in Los Angeles., David Siegel, will address current events in the Middle East and beyond in the closing keynote.
More than 150 students from 33 campuses will participate in the event, from Boston to California, New Orleans to Toronto. Mishelanu, in collaboration with the Jewish Agency for Israel and the Israeli Tzofim (Scouts), will feature two and half days of in-depth sessions on such pressing topics as the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel and the evolving identity of Israelis in America.
“When we founded Mishelanu in 2012, we recognized the need to connect to our Jewish heritage and our dual Israeli-American identity,” said Dadi Perlmutter. “With the first Mishelanu National Conference, we are building a nationwide college network to advocate for our values at a time when that’s more critical than ever.”
Mishelanu, which means “One of us” in Hebrew, maintains chapters on 33 campuses across the country, with on-campus programs, off-campus seminars, and an eight-week personalized internship experience in Israel geared for Israeli-Americans. The first national student gathering will take place as the IAC helps lead and unite the emerging Israeli-American community. The IAC has already expanded nationwide, and held its first national conference in Washington this past November.