While there were four graduates from the first course, this year 21 highly-motivated Jaffa residents, ages 19-40, completed the intensive six-month course. The curriculum trains participants in computer applications, hardware and software and Internet systems. They also receive intensive job-search support including effective resume writing, interview preparation, workplace etiquette and women’s empowerment sessions.
The graduation ceremony for the 2009 course was held at the new Peres Peace House in Jaffa, where graduates received internationally recognized certification from Cisco in IT Essentials. The women are currently interviewing for jobs in their new field of expertise.
The course was part of the Peres Center’s Social, Training, and Enrichment Program (STEP) in Jaffa that is funded by the Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation and also by the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Israel. Like numerous other international companies in Israel, Cisco, the multinational supplier of networking equipment and network management for the Internet, gives back to the community by offering and sponsoring training in high-tech as part of its corporate social responsibility efforts.