How to Apply
This page provides the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding our program application process and requirements.
Who is eligible to apply?
Who is eligible to apply for a Germany Close Up program?
You are eligible to apply for a Germany Close Up Program if you are between 18 and 39 years of age, self-define as Jewish, are a US or Canadian citizen or permanent resident and have not been on a Germany Close Up program in the past.
How do I find a suitable program?
We run ten to twelve programs a year. Most of these are run in cooperation with a partner organization in the United States. A small number of programs each year are run as open programs without an affiliated partner organization. All programs advertised as 'open' do not require that you be affiliated with the partner organization to apply. Most programs are tailored more specifically towards either students or young professionals. We recommend choosing a program that fits your profile, although this is not obligatory.
Can I come on a Germany Close Up trip if I keep kosher and shomer Shabbat?
Yes. It is possible to keep kosher and shomer Shabbat on all Germany Close Up programs. Kosher meal packages can be ordered from our kosher caterer and programming over Shabbat is optional and/or Shabbat friendly. The hotel we use over Shabbat is shomer Shabbat and within walking distance of services.
What does a complete application look like?
How do I apply for a Germany Close Up program?
To apply for one of our programs, submit our online application form and attach all the required documents, as listed on the program information page, as a single PDF document.
I cannot submit the online application form with or without an attachment.
The online application form can only be submitted with a single attachment. If you are unable to condense all of your documents into a single PDF, please send these in a separate email to: office[@]germanycloseup.de. Please do not attach zip files or word documents to your online application. These are not compatible with our online system. Please only attach PDF documents.
What documents do I need for my application?
For a successful application you need to provide a cover letter, a current resume, a short essay (statement of interest) of at least 500 words, and two letters of recommendation. Please note that if you are applying for a trip that we are running in cooperation with a partner organization you may only need to provide us with one letter of recommendation.
Who should write my letter of recommendation?
Your letter of recommendation can be written by one of your college or university professors, your community rabbi, a past or present employer, or a colleague or business partner. If you are applying for a trip with a partner organization such as AJC or Hillel, please note that your recommendation must come from an external source. We cannot accept recommendations from employees of these organizations. If you are applying for a trip with a partner college or university such as JTS or Yeshiva University, please note that we can only accept recommendations from teaching staff (professors or lecturers) and not from members of the administrative staff.
What is a cover letter and how does it differ from my statement of interest?
In your cover letter you should briefly introduce yourself. It should be written as an accompaniment to your resume and should give a general idea of who you are, your background, and why you want to apply. You should regard the cover letter as the first page of your application.In your essay you should elaborate on your specific interest in the program.
When will I be notified whether I have been accepted?
Once the application period has closed, it usually takes about three to four weeks to evaluate the applications received and confer with our partner organization. Once candidates for the program have been chosen, all applicants will be informed of the outcome for their application. Successful candidates will receive an official acceptance letter from Germany Close Up together with a waiver form. Please note that you are not officially accepted to our program until you have returned the waiver form with a handwritten signature.
What fees are associated with my participation?
Do I have to pay a participation fee?
Yes. Our program is largely funded by a grant from the German government’s Transatlantic Program, which draws on funds from the European Recovery Program (ERP) of the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy. This grant covers around two thirds of the overall costs of each trip. The additional third of the program’s cost is covered by the participation fee. This fee differs slightly from program to program and depends on factors such as program duration and content. Information on the participation fee for each individual program can be found on the separate program page. Germany Close Up is designed as an educational program, which aims to provide participants with a worthwhile learning experience. The funding provided by the German government is therefore effectively a scholarship, enabling participants to take part in the program.
Why do I have to buy my own flight ticket?
Instead of asking you to pay the participation fee directly to us, we ask you to pay for your own flight ticket. After the trip we reimburse you for your flight costs and subtract the participation fee from that amount. Purchasing your own ticket also means that you can select flight times to fit with your own schedule and travel plans.
What happens if my flight is more expensive than the participation fee? Can I ask for additional funding?
Occasionally, participants may find that their flights cost more than the program participation fee. In such cases, Germany Close Up is often able to offer a reimbursement for at least some of these additional costs. The precise amounts that can be reimbursed differ for each program can be found on the individual program page. We are unable to reimburse above the specified amounts or provide additional funding to help cover the program participation fee.