ISEF scholars at Shamoon College of Engineering

Because Israel's single greatest natural resource is the minds of its young people. ISEF opens the doors to higher education for more than 400 promising young Israelis from underserved and immigrant communities throughout Israel. Learn More


The acclaimed memoir by ISEF President Nina Weiner shares the joys and challenges of building The ISEF Foundation and the exciting life journey which led her to that purpose.

“Weiner writes with great zest and a clear eyed devotion to facts and to the harsh realities of life that awaited displaced Jews from the Middle East upon their arrival in Israel.” – Andre Aciman, author of Out of Egypt

Click to purchase Circles of Empowerment on Amazon. All proceeds benefit ISEF.


ISEF Israel's annual Shabbat Leadership Conference, March 24-25, 2017, welcomed 400 young ISEF scholars along with ISEF alumni for interactive study sessions, relationship-building activities and commemoration of ISEF’s innumerable accomplishments in developing Israel's intellectual capital spanning four decades.




From earning prestigious awards and top appointments, to publishing research, film premiers and leading international conferences, ISEF scholars and alumni are inspiring the next generation of Israel's leaders. Read More

Archive: ISEF's success stories!

Bridge to College Program in Nesher Welcomes New and Continuing Students

Luna and Selim Benardete bridge to college Fund LOGO

Tenth graders and their ISEF tutors kicked off 2017 with their second group Bridge to College workshop at the Nesher Community Center on January 1st.  The newcomers were joined by continuing 11th and 12th graders in the program, now in its third year in Nesher.

Nesher’s mayor and ISEF alumnus, Avi Binamo, proudly spoke of the program’s success, and urged students to maximize the resources given to them. He said that ISEF is one of the most important organizations in Israel, one that contributed to his personal and professional achievements and those of many of his fellow ISEF alumni who are leaders in medicine, law, public administration and the private sector.

Tomer Samarkandi, Executive Director of ISEF Israel, thanked Mayor Binamo and the Nesher municipality for their strong partnership and support.  He encouraged the pupils to believe in themselves and to see their ISEF tutors as role models, who have walked the same path toward a bright future.  The mayor and Mr. Samarkandi wished the students success in their journey toward fulfilling their potential and realizing their academic dreams.

Bridge to College

Through the Luna and Selim Benardete Bridge to College Fund, young scholars are trained in leadership and serve as mentors, tutors and role models for young Israelis in their home communities.

The program targets high school students in the distressed area of Nesher, who show clear potential for college, but need financial assistance, along with help to develop self-confidence, pass their matriculation exams and gain admission to higher education.

Read more about the program

Student Testimonials

ISEF Alum & Nesher Mayor Speaks at Bridge to College Fund Event

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Lily and Edmund Safra

ISEF was founded in 1977 by Edmond J. Safra z"l, Lily Safra and Nina Weiner.