Student Life

Welcome and Shalom

 

Dear students,

Welcome to The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment in Rehovot!

Our goal is to help you adjust to life on campus and in Rehovot. By providing practical support as well as extracurricular activities, we hope to make your stay as comfortable and interesting as possible.

Here you will find important information for your pre-arrival arrangements and future stay on our campus.

We are looking forward to welcoming you at our faculty.

Le'Hitraot Be'karov (See You Soon)!

The International School Team

 

social_activities

 

Visa

As of March 1, 2022 it is no longer required to be fully vaccinated/recovered in order to receive a visa and enter The State of Israel.

New students: Applying for a student visa

Israel’s Ministry of Interior requires you to obtain a student visa before entering Israel. You will not be allowed to enter the country without a student visa. To obtain the visa, you must make an appointment at your local Israeli embassy or consulate and apply for a one-year, multiple-entry, A2 Student Visa. Please make sure your passport is valid for the entire duration of your studies before applying for the visa.

Students coming to Israel with spouses and children are to apply for A4 visas at the local embassies/consulates. Please bring with you to Israel the authenticated copies of your marriage certificate and/or birth certificates.

New students and post-docs must submit the following documents when applying for a visa at the embassy/consulate:

1. The acceptance letter to HUJI or the acceptance letter from a HUJI supervisor (if applying for A4 visas the dependents must be mentioned in the letter)

2. A valid health insurance policy covering Covid-19. You may purchase Harel-Yedidim health insurance policy for HUJI students.

3. Letter of guarantee from the University to obey the rules instructed by Ministry of Health in Israel and letter of approval to the University, given by Ministry of Health - Please contact the visa coordinator (contact details below) for the documents. This may no longer be required - please consult with the embassy/consulate.

For covid-19 entry regulations please visit: https://corona.health.gov.il/en/abroad/arriving-foreign-nationals/

 

Current students: Visa extension

One month prior to the expiration date of the student visa, the student must contact the faculty's visa coordinator in order to prepare for the visa extension. 

During the month of the expiration date of the student visa, the student must apply for a visa extension at the Ministry of Interior in Rehovot. 

Visa extension fees (as of August 2022): 180 NIS for the extension and 180 NIS for the multiple entries. The visa fees are to be paid by credit/debit card at the Ministry during the submission of the visa extension.

Follow these steps for the visa extension:

1. Hebrew University status documentation:

In order to apply for the visa extension, the student must have the following documents:

For B.Sc. / M.Sc. non-thesis students: proof of registration to the academic year from the Office of Student Affairs or from the personal data page/HUJIApp.

For research students (M.Sc. thesis track/PhD/post-docs): a visa supporting letter from your advisor, addressed to the Ministry of Interior in Rehovot. 

The letter from your advisor needs to include:

  • your full name, nationality and passport number.

  • your current studies track, the duration of your studies.

  • funding and scholarship details and whether it covers your tuition, health insurance, housing and living expenses. 

  • If there's a need for a multiple entry visa, this needs to be specified in the letter with the reason for such visa (for example: visiting your homeland, attending conferences). 

2. Visa Extension Form:

All students extending visas must fill out this form (see form below).

Digital headshot can be inserted into the pdf form. 

3. Entry Visa Form:

This form is to be filled only if you need a multiple entry visa, and needs to be submitted along with your Visa Extension Form (see form below).

Digital headshot can be inserted into the pdf form. 

4. Submission of documents to the faculty's visa coordinator:

Once you have gathered all necessary documents please bring them over to Mahyan Gon at the International School, who will provide you with a cover letter and will guide you through the visa extension process at the Ministry of Interior in Rehovot. 

5. Submission of visa extension at the Ministry of Interior:

Visa extensions are handled at ministry Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 8:00 until 9:00.

The Ministry of Interior (called in Hebrew "Misrad Hapnim") is located at 10 Moti Kind st. on the 3rd floor

Location: https://goo.gl/maps/6FpYK4CFxxZyMxbRA

*Please note: the Ministry of Interior is closed during Jewish and national holidays. If you know in advance that your visa will expire during a holiday, please make sure to apply tor the extension before the ministry closes.

 

Visa coordinator:
Ms. Mahyan Gon
 

Health Insurance

 

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem requires all students, postdoctoral fellows and visiting researchers to be covered by adequate health insurance for the duration of their stay in Israel.

In order to expedite the post-arrival absorption process, we strongly recommend this be completed before your departure. 

Please note that since Covid-19 Israeli embassies/consulates/visa centers now require to present proof of health insurance coverage when applying for a visa to Israel.

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem recommends that you purchase the local Harel Yedidim insurance plan for HUJI students that provides extensive coverage for international students, who benefit from medical services across the country. The price for Rehovot campus students is 13.20 NIS a day and includes covid-19 coverage.

 

How to purchase/extend Harel Yedidim health insurance:

B.Sc / M.Sc / PhD students:

Please submit the online form in your personal data page or in this link

Post-docs:

If your lab is paying for your health insurance, please fill out the "Health Insurance application form" (make sure to write your student number) and send it to your lab manager for him/her to submit to Ms. Elinor Drachsler along with the lab's budget number. Elinor: int_insurance@savion.huji.ac.il

If your lab is not paying for your health insurance and you are to pay on your own, please submit the online form in this link.

Exchange Students / Visiting Research Fellows:

Please fill out the "Health Insurance application form" (make sure to write your student number) and "Health Insurance credit card payment form" and e-mail both forms to Ms. Keren Ohayon: kerenoha@savion.huji.ac.il

All students:

If you are to pay for the health insurance on your own and do not wish to pay through the university's tuition department OR you are running out of time and you did not get your health insurance: please submit the online form in this link.

 

Important notice: Renewal of Health Insurance

The insurance company does not send a reminder for those who need to extend the insurance. The extension is on the responsibility of the student. The policy is sent to student's email by the health insurance company.

 

 

Practical information

Israeli Bank Account

Students who receive stipends are required to open a bank account in Israel. Fellowships are paid in local currency (New Israeli Shekels – NIS). 

In order to open a bank account, you will need the following:

  1. Passport with a valid visa

  2. Certificate of enrollment at the Hebrew University

  3. Taxpaying information from home country (TIN, SSN, Numéro Fiscal)

  4. Israeli cellphone number

*The Herzl branch of Leumi Bank now offers special benefits for international students.      

Once you have opened an account, please update your bank account details through the personal data page or through the HUJIapp.

 

Israeli SIM Card

We strongly recommend that you use a local SIM card. This will allow easier communication in case of emergency. Please notify the international school that you have an Israeli phone number.

 

Rav Kav (public transportation card)

The Rav-Kav card is a pre-paid travel card that allows you to use public transportation in Israel.

Cardholders can apply a student discount onto the card. You will need to present your student card at a Rav Kav service station, located at the train station and at the Egged central bus station, in order for the student discount to apply onto your card. This is a one-time procedure.

Rav Kav website

You can purchase the card at the Egged Central Bus Station located at the Ofer Mall in Rehovot on level 0 (the mall is 20 minutes walking distance from the campus). Operating hours of the cashier at the bus station: Sunday - Thursday 07:00-19:00 and on Fridays 08:00-13:00

You will not be able to travel by bus without this card.

 

 

Electricity

Electrical sockets usually supply electricity at between 220 and 240 volts AC.

If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need.

                       

Money 

There is one ATM on campus, near the main Herzl gate. Other ATMs can be found outside banks and small vending shops.

When exchanging foreign currency you must show your passport (or a photocopy of the first pages, including your name, photograph and passport number). Money can be exchanged at banks and change points.

 

Shopping 

Supermarkets, shops and malls are usually open Sundays-Thursdays 10:00-21:00 (and sometimes later), Fridays 9:00-14:30. Closed on Saturdays until the evening and re-open from a half hour after sunset until around 23:00.

A grocery store is located across the street from the main gate of the Faculty, beside one of the gates to the Weizmann Institute of Science. It is open daily from 9:00 - 18:00, except for Friday when it is open from 9:00 - 13:00, and Saturday when it is closed.

 

Security

Routine security checks are made when entering public buildings (including institutes, train stations, malls etc.).

 

 

Arriving at the faculty

The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment is located in the city of Rehovot, approximately 35 Kilometers/22 Miles from Ben Gurion airport.
Upon your arrival we advise you to get shekels (NIS) at the airport, as some taxis won’t take credit cards or Dollars/Euros. There are ATMs and change points at the airport.
The current exchange rate is approx. 3.5 NIS to the Dollar and 4.5 NIS to the Euro, though it fluctuates.
 
Transportation to Rehovot from Terminal 3 at Ben Gurion airport:
 
Taxis 
Taxis should cost approx. 150 NIS, depending on the amount of passengers, pieces of
luggage and day/night rates.airport_taxi_station
The dispatcher post is located in Level G, at the exit from Gate 03 (left of the main exit).
The dispatcher will provide with a note with contact details in case of need.
The journey should take about 25-30 minutes, if there is no traffic.
Address in Hebrew for taxi driver: הפקולטה לחקלאות, רחובות
Address: Faculty of Agriculture, Rehovot
 
Public transportation:
 
*There is no public transportation (trains/buses) from Friday afternoon until Saturday night.
If you arrive during this time frame your only option is taking a taxi.
*There are no buses from Terminal 3 to Rehovot.
Taking a bus requires taking an airport shuttle bus to a train station located outside the terminal.
 
Trains
There is no direct train between Ben Gurion airport and Rehovot.
Train passengers are required to switch trains in Tel Aviv.  
Visit the Israel Railways website for schedules and fares.
Frequency: During the day the frequency of trains from the airport to Rehovot (via Tel Aviv) is approx. every half hour (Sunday-Thursday).
The ticket price is 15 NIS and is payable by Rav Kav (pre-paid travel card that allows you to use public transportation in Israel) or by credit card/cash the cashier/vending machine in the station.
The journey should take about 45-55 minutes (due to the switch in Tel Aviv).
The train station in Rehovot is located at a short walking distance from the Faculty:
5 minutes from the main Herzl gate, 15 minutes from Reisfeld Residence.
Please make sure to exit the train station from the “Southern Exit”.
 
Opening hours of the Campus gates:
  • The main gate, Herzl gate, is open 24/7.
  • The Eshkol gate (Hankin Street) is open for pedestrians only 
 
Telephone number of the security center (24 hours): +972.8.9489290 / +972.8.9489290
 

On-Campus Housing

On-Campus Dormitories

Living in university housing is an important part of your study abroad experience and a great chance to make new friends from all over the world as well as to meet Israeli students. The Rehovot campus dormitories is an affordable option for students, situated in a beautiful green surrounding, with access to all the necessary facilities.

Room types:

  1. Double room in a dormitory-style building with AC, shared restrooms, showers and kitchens.
  2. Single room in a dormitory-style building with AC, shared restrooms, showers and kitchens.
  3. Single room in a shared apartment with AC, shared kitchen, shower and restroom.

Dormitory rent varies according to room type from approx. 850 NIS to approx. 1,400 NIS per month.

For more information please contact Mr. David Biton, Rehovot campus dormitories manager: 08-9473177

Student dormitories website: https://dorms.huji.ac.il/en/

Dormitories

 

Reisfeld Residence (on-campus guesthouse)

The Reisfeld Residence guesthouse is located nearby the dormitories and offers accommodation with special rates for HUJI students.

All rooms include AC, clean bedding and towels, WIFI and a laundromat on the ground floor.

Room types:

  1. Single room in an apartment with 4 or 5 rooms – single room with a wsingle bed, desk and closet, with a shared equipped kitchenette, showers, toilets and a balcony
  2. Double or single occupancy rooms with an equipped kitchenette, toilet, shower and a balcony

For more information, prices and availability please contact: reisfeld@mail.huji.ac.il 

reisfeld_residence

 

Campus dormitories

  dorms2   dorms3   dorms5

  dorms4   dorms6  dorms7

                                                                                                             dorms1   

 

 

Covid-19

Last update: February 23, 2022
 
Below you will find practical information and links related to covid-19 in Israel:
 
Health insurance:
It is mandatory to have health insurance covering Covid-19 during your entire stay in Israel. Currently HUJI students are required to purchase the Harel Yedidim health Insurance policy. The health insurance is operated by Clalit Medical Services, one of Israel's four medical services providers (also known as HMOs - Health Maintenance Organizations). Clalit members receive full covid-19 coverage, including vaccinations, and have access to all of Clalit medical services in Rehovot.
Your passport number and Israeli cellphone number must be updated in Clalit's records. Please visit a Clalit clinic and ask the secretary there to update this information in your records. Bring with you your Clalit membership card and your passport.
 
Green Pass:
As of February 6, 2022 entry into the campus is no longer limited only to those who hold a valid Green Pass. Presenting a negative PCR/Supervised Antigen test result to campus security is no longer required for those who do not hold a valid Green Pass. 
 
If you were vaccinated or recovered from covid-19 in Israel:
You are supposed to receive your Green Pass automatically. However, there are some technical issues that may cause difficulties in generating the Green Pass. If you are encountering these problems you should seek the assistance of Harel-Yedidim by contacting Ms. Meytal Assor: academic@yedidim.co.il or the Harel-Yedidim hotline 03-6386216
 
If you were vaccinated abroad or recovered from covid-19 abroad:
You will need to have your vaccination/recovery certificate acknowledged by the Israeli Ministry of Health in order to be eligible to receive the Green Pass.
  1. Your passport number and Israeli cellphone number must be updated in Clalit's records. Please visit a Clalit clinic and ask the secretary there to update this information in your records. Bring with you your Clalit membership card and your passport.
  2. Go to the nurse at the Clalit clinic at the Rehovot mall. You do not need an appointment. Bring with you your Clalit membership card, your passport and your vaccine certificate/recovery certificate. If you also got a serological test in Israel please bring the test results with you. Tell the nurse that Harel-Yedidim instructed you to update your vaccine/recovery record through Clalit in order to get your Green Pass valid for 6 months from the 2nd or 3rd dose or your recovery date.
  3. After these steps are done, you should be able to generate an updated green pass. If you are unable to get it within 2-3 days, please seek the assistance of Harel-Yedidim by contacting Ms. Meytal Assor: academic@yedidim.co.il or the Harel-Yedidim hotline 03-6386216
 
Covid testing due to close contact with a confirmed covid case:
The International School Team will notify you about confirmed covid cases on campus.
Definition of close contact with a confirmed case and isolation requirements: https://corona.health.gov.il/en/isolation-lobby/isolation-close-contact/
 
Antigen tests:
The supervised Antigen rapid tests are operated either by MADA or by Ichilov-Well.
The MADA station is located at 11 Dr. Marshov street in Rehovot (behind the Clalit clinic on Remez street).
You can go get tested anytime during the operating hours (without an appointment).
MADA (operating hours in Hebrew): https://www.mdais.org/en/101/location-speed-tests
Ichilov-Well (in Hebrew): https://ichilov-well.co.il/fast_test/
 
PCR Tests:
At Pikud Haoref (Home Front Command)
As of February 1, 2022 testing is no longer available for those under the age of 30
Drive-in testing facility, only accessible by car/taxi. The operating hours are posted in Hebrew only and for the upcoming 5 days: https://www.oref.org.il/12610-17882-en/Pakar.aspx
The testing site in Rehovot is outside the Minkov Orchard Museum.
At Pikud Haoref you will need to show a barcode on your phone. To get the barcode you must fill out this online form: https://reg.ecovid19.co.il/?lng=en
 
At Clalit
As of January 19, 2022 testing is no longer available for those under the age of 60
Book an appointment either through the Clalit online account or by calling *2700
 
Covid testing map (Antigen + PCR) in Hebrew: https://test-covid-il.web.app/map
 
Testing positive and self-isolation:
First step: Positive Antigen home-test 
Second step: Positive supervised Antigen test (MADA/Ichilov-Well)
Optional: PCR Test (only if you are eligible to be tested)
 
In case you were tested positive and were in public facilities on campus please notify your supervisor/department secretariat and campus security: bitahonagri@savion.huji.ac.il
 
What you should do if you were tested positive in an Antigen home-testing kit:
 
1. Supervised test: Get a supervised Antigen test either through MADA or Ichilov-Well. Clalit and the Ministry of Health will acknowledge your positive result and have it recoded on your Clalit records only if you present your Clalit ID number at the testig facility.
 
2. Enter self-isolation: Self-isolation regulations can be found here: https://corona.health.gov.il/en/isolation-lobby/isolation-confirmed-corona/
 
Please note that if you are living in the dorms you are not permitted to self-isolate in your dorm room. In this case please contact Reisfeld Residence, the on-campus guesthouse, and book a quarantine room: reisfeld@mail.huji.ac.il
 
As of January 19, 2022 the self-isolation period has been reduced to 5-7 full days from the date of the official positive result.
 
3. Exit self-isolation: If you get a negative result on a home Antigen test on the 4th day of isolation and on the evening of the 5th day of isolation and do not have any symptoms you will be released from isolation. If one of those results are positive you must complete 7 days of isolation.
 
4. Updated certificates: Several days after the recovery you should be able to generate a new Green Pass and Covid Certificate from this site: https://corona.health.gov.il/en/green-pass/
You should also be able to see a recovery certificate on your Clalit account. If you do not see it, please go to a Clalit clinic and seek their assistance.
 
 
Useful Links:
More Hebrew University Covid-19 updates: https://openscholar.huji.ac.il/en.vp-director/corona
 
We know these are challenging times. Living in a world facing a pandemic away from your family and loved ones is not easy. We are here to support you. If you need assistance, advice or just someone to talk to, feel free to contact Mahyan Gon from the International School: mahyang@savion.huji.ac.il
 

Hebrew University Psychological Service

The Psychological Service department offers help and counseling to students in distress.
The professional staff consists mainly of psychologists, but also social workers and psychiatrists.

 

Psychological Service – step by step:

1. An applicant seeking consultation needs to fill out an initial application form online. After receiving the request, the applicant will receive an e-mail from the Psychological Service with an introductory questionnaire.

2. The applicant is to complete the introductory questionnaire within 4 days. A complete response to the questionnaire will help the Psychological Service determine what treatment is best for the applicant.

3. After submission of the questionnaire, the Psychological Service will contact the applicant (within a few days) to arrange an introductory meeting.

4. The applicant will meet with the Psychological Service. The purpose of the meeting is to understand the reasons for the request and the urgency of beginning the therapy in order to provide the most appropriate response.
This meeting is free of charge. During this meeting, the applicant may also ask questions and get to know the therapeutic framework the Psychological Service offers.

5. The applicant will then receive an answer regarding the suggested therapy, according to the nature of the referral and to the availability of the service on campus. The cost of an on-campus therapy session is 190 NIS.
In case the Psychological Service is unable to provide the applicant with an appropriate therapy within the campus framework, the applicant will be referred to an off-campus psychological service (for a higher fee).

The treatment process is kept strictly confidential. No information on the applicant will be given to or at the Hebrew University, except on the basis of explicit consent and written permission from the applicant.

 

For more information on the Psychological Service provided at The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment please contact: Ms. Neta Hornung-Broudo, psyserv@mail.huji.ac.il, Phone: 02-5882685

 

Psychological Service – Refund:

Refund of psychotherapy expenses for students covered by Harel health insurance policy (handled by "Yedidim")*: Refund of up to 200 NIS per session and up to 12 sessions per year. The number of sessions will be calculated proportionate to the insurance period.  Students covered by Harel health insurance will be entitled during a one-year insurance period to up to 12 sessions of psychotherapy. The number of sessions will be proportionate to the number of months of the insurance period. Coverage will not be given for a number of sessions that exceeds the number of months of the insurance period. For example – in an insurance period of 6 months, the Insured will be entitled to a refund for 6 sessions. The Insurer will make the refund in return for receipts in an amount of up NIS 200 per session.

The policyholder is to submit the receipts of the therapy treatments by fax to Yedidim: 03-6874534

*Disclaimer:

Students who have purchased the insurance policy for the first time after January 2018 are automatically covered by the expanded premium (cost: 9.75 NIS a day) and are entitled to receive the refund.

Students who have purchased their first insurance policy before January 2018 and when renewing the policy remained in the old premium (cost: 7.25 NIS a day) are not eligible to receive the refund.

When renewing your health insurance policy you will have the option to expand your premium (for an additional cost) and receive the additional services provided in the new expanded premium.

 

 

The Bonam Sport and Leisure Center

 

The Bonam Sport and Leisure Center, which includes a gym and swimming pool, is located across the street from the Reisfeld Residence.

In order to use the gym, you must fill in the health statement (see below) and submit a letter confirming that you are a student of the faculty (either from the student affairs office or through the International School, depending on the program you are enrolled in). Please bring both documents to the gym’s office.

A monthly subscription for the gym and the pool costs 330 NIS (as of October 2018).

It is not possible to use the gym facilities on a one-time or weekly basis.

Students who wish to enter the pool (not the gym) on a one-time basis may purchase a one-time entry ticket for 50 NIS on weekdays/55 NIS on Saturdays (as of October 2018).

the_bonam_sport_and_leisure_center

Transportation

Public transportation

 

Buses:

The closest bus station is located just outside the Herzl gate. For Tel Aviv you will need to cross the street and for downtown Rehovot just turn right after you exit Herzl gate and you will find the bus station.

The buses to Tel-Aviv run every 10-15 minutes.  Bus No: 201, 301, 274

On Fridays: Service ends at around 16:30

On Saturdays: Service begins shortly after sundown and ends at approximately 23:30.

Payment is made by Rav-Kav card or via a payment app (such as MoovitRav-Pass by HopOn)

Visit the Egged Bus Company website for schedules and fares. 

 

Trains:

The train station is a very short walk from the main campus gate.  

Between Rehovot and Tel Aviv: once or twice an hour, Sunday through Friday. More frequent service during rush hours (mornings to Tel Aviv, late afternoons to Rehovot). No trains from Friday afternoon until Saturday evening (after sundown).

For other locations, some trains from Rehovot continue directly and others are timed for connections (change trains in Tel Aviv).

Train tickets are either charged on the Rav-Kav card or can be purchased by credit card or cash at the tickets vending machines in the stations.

Visit the Israel Railways website for schedules and fares.

 

“Sherut” cab (shared shuttle minibuses):

The "Sherut” cab service (shared yellow minibus for 10 passengers) operates on inter-urban lines collecting and carrying passengers along fixed routes. The payment is in cash and the price is either equal to or only slightly higher than the ordinary bus fare. These "sherut" cabs also run on weekends and nights, when buses and trains are unavailable.  They stop at the bus stops near the main gate of the Faculty and at other points along Herzl Street.

 

Taxis:

Taxis are available all day and night, but cost more evenings, on Friday nights and Saturdays. Payment is in cash and some taxis take credit cards.

Three large cab companies are:

"Hanassi" taxi station: 195 Herzl St. (closest to campus):  +972.8.9366666

"Gordon" taxi station: 2 Bilu St. (near the mall):  +972.8.9492211

"Hanegev" taxi station: 30 Teller St.: +972.8.9466666 (downtown + at train station)

 “Gett” app: https://gett.com/il/services/taxi/

 

Driving in Israel

International students can drive with an international drivers license (issued by the transportation authority in the student's home country) for a duration of one year.

If you wish to continue driving in Israel after one year, you will need to get an Israeli drivers license.

Guidelines on the conversion process can be found below.