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Masa Program Staff

Masa Program Staff 2019-03-11T11:26:02+00:00

Kristina Kruzhkova, Masa Program Manager, has served as a Jewish educator in a variety of different contexts in both Russia and Israel. In Russia, she coordinated and facilitated educational seminars for the Jewish Agency and ICHEIC (the International Commission on Holocaust Era Insurance Claims) Humanitarian Fund. In Israel, she facilitated Jewish educational seminars for children and young people. Kristina has an M.A. in Sociology, and has worked in early childhood education and, more recently, in human resources management.

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Liat Vardi, Masa Program Manager, is an experienced educator, mentor teacher, and educational supervisor. She was the Director of Teacher-Soldiers in the North of Israel for the Aluma organization, providing supervision and training in Jewish culture for soldiers serving as teachers. She also was a teacher in Israel and Brazil, and a mentor teacher and group facilitator in a variety of contexts in Israel. Liat has an M.A. from Netanya Academic College and a B.A. and Teaching Certificate from the University of Haifa.

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Natalia Ryabyshenkov, Masa Program Manager, is leading the Masa M. Teach program at Oranim. She has experience in developing and implementing informal Jewish educational programs for teenagers and young adults, including a project for Charity Foundation CAF supported by the UJA-Federation of NY. She has a certificate in facilitating Informal Jewish Education from Russian State University for the Humanities, and a B.A. in Economics and Programming. Natalia is currently an M.Teach student at Oranim College.

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Sima Hans, Masa Program Manager, has worked with children and youth in a variety of frameworks. She served as a counselor at therapeutic boarding schools, Beit Oron and Mikveh Yisrael. She also was a ropes course instructor and counselor at Camp Nesher in the United States. Sima is currently studying for her B.A. from Oranim in Informal Education and History.

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Kevin Benedykt, Masa Program Coordinator, made aliyah from Montevideo, Uruguay. In Uruguay, he taught mathematics and robotics at the local Jewish day school and was a counselor in the HaBonim Dror youth movement. Since making aliyah, he was the Academic Coordinator for the Jewish Agency’s Machon Youth Leadership Training program in Jerusalem. Kevin studied economics at the University of the Republic in Uruguay.

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Karina Epelfeld, Masa Recruitment Coordinator, is a qualified ESL teacher. Prior to making aliyah, she taught ESL in private lessons and at a language school in Ukraine. She earned two bachelor’s degrees in Ukraine, one from Khmelnytskiy Humanitarian-Pedagogical Academy in Primary Education and Philology, and a second from the National Academy of the State Border Guard Service in Foreign Languages and Other Humanities. Karina is currently an M. Teach student in the English Department at Oranim College.

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