July 10-18, 2023
Current Programs

An Open Program for Students and Young Professionals in Affiliation with the Congregation B'nai B'rith Santa Barbara


Established in October 2007, Germany Close Up – North American Jews Meet Modern Germany is an initiative created to enrich transatlantic dialogue and provide Jewish, North American students and young professionals in their twenties and thirties with an opportunity to experience modern Germany firsthand. A generous government scholarship (a part of the ERP Special Assets of the German Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action) covers more than two thirds of participation costs, which leaves a participation fee of $950 per person. At the same time, Germany Close Up is an independent body regarding the organization and content of its programs. The purpose of the program is to allow participants to gain their own perspective on Germany through individual experience.

©Laura Stöbener

Explore and experience contemporary Germany through meetings, site visits, and informal sessions with Jewish and non-Jewish young German peers.

The programs are designed to expose participants to a range of aspects that make up modern Germany, with both the past and present in focus. Program content is presented through various activities, tours, and meetings. All programs cover issues related to Germany’s reflection on its past and its efforts to deal with the memory of the Holocaust and the Nazi horror up to this very day. They also consider Germany’s transformation over the last decades into a modern, reunified, and democratic country in the heart of the European Union.

The nine day program between July 10 and 18, 2023 (arrival in Germany on July 9) will expose participants to Berlin’s multicultural life, allow them to visit sites such as a former concentration camp, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe and the Jewish Museum in Berlin, and to experience other key historical sites and cultural venues. They will meet with German opinion-makers from the academic and political spheres, representatives of grass roots movements and the Jewish community, as well as German contemporaries. The role of Jewish voices in transatlantic relations will be explored as participants actively contribute to German-American dialogue. 


The program will focus on the following topics:

  • Berlin and united Germany
  • The Holocaust and the Nazi Era (including a visit to a former Concentration Camp)
  • Jewish Life in Berlin, past and present
  • German Politics and Society today
  • Transatlantic relations (including a meeting with officials of the German Federal Foreign Office)
  • Visit to a city outside Berlin




This fee includes airfare, hotel accommodation in double rooms (3 star), most meals, and ground expenses. The scholarship does not include tipping. Please keep in mind that you will need to pay around 50€ (roughly US$50) for tips.

Participants pay their participation fee indirectly to Germany Close Up by purchasing their round-trip airline ticket. After being accepted to the program, participants are expected to book their roundtrip airline ticket to Berlin with economy class and to provide proof of purchase to Germany Close Up. In most cases, a participant's airline ticket purchase will cover the US$950 fee, and nothing more is owed to Germany Close Up. Please note, however, that tickets purchased using airline miles do not count towards coverage of this fee. Participants who purchase their tickets using miles will still owe the US$950 participation fee. 

Flight reimbursement

If your air fare is lower than US$950, the remainder is due to Germany Close Up following the program’s conclusion. If your air fare is more than US$950, you may be eligible for a flight reimbursement from Germany Close Up for some of your costs above this amount. Please note that this amount is capped and depends on your point of departure in the United States or Canada. For participants departing from Los Angeles the maximum reimbursement available is $300 (max. flight costs for full reimbursement: US$1,250). Only flight costs above the US$950 participation fee are considered for reimbursement. 

For example:

For flight costs from Los Angeles US$1,100, you will be reimbursed US$150.

For flight costs from Los Angeles US$1,250, you will be reimbursed US$300.

For flight costs from Los Angeles of US$1,300, you will be reimbursed US$300.


Reimbursement will take place several weeks after the program’s conclusion and will be coordinated by the Congregation B'nai B'rith Santa Barbara. Please note that the reimbursement process can take up to three months.


9 days. July 10-18, 2023.

Further information

Application documents

Cover letter


A 500 word statement outlining your interest in the program

One letter of recommendation (B'nai B'rith external)

Application close

January 20, 2023.

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