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Start-Up Nation Central

About the program

According to a survey conducted by Start-Up Nation Central (SNC), under the leadership of Eugene Kandel, former Chairman of Israel’s National Economic Council, Israel faces a shortage of trained personnel for approximately 12,000 sophisticated programming jobs that require high-quality employees. The survey also indicates that despite an increase in the percentage of Arab and Haredi computer science students (about 7% of the total students in the general population), their rate of integration into the high-tech industry, and especially in development positions at the industry’s core, remains very low, at about 2%. The survey also indicates that these populations’ insufficient integration into high-tech stems mainly from a lack of practical experience and a considerable paucity in technological and soft skills and is particularly conspicuous in the Jerusalem region, where 37% of the population is Arab and 32% – Haredi.

The “Excellenteam” project, developed by SNC in collaboration with Israel’s leading high-tech companies, including Mobileye and Google, focuses on Jerusalem and consists of two tracks, customized to two of the city’s target audiences: The academic track – a short and intensive training program (bootcamp) for computer science graduates from the Arab and Haredi populations, along with subsequent guidance towards placement; and a longer vocational training track in computer science for the students of the Haredi seminaries of the Beit Yaakov Center, which provides a practical engineer (pre-academic) certificate to its participants, in addition to both the technological knowledge and the required skills and accompaniment for integration into the core of the high-tech industry. The programs were developed and are taught separately, and address the specific challenges and needs of each population.

Since 2019, four bootcamp cycles have been completed, with a total of 200 participants from both communities. Some 75% of the participants have secured employment in leading high-tech companies. The project introduces an innovative model for the development of an up-to-date, high-quality curriculum for unique populations, under the leadership of groundbreaking technology companies.


  1. To significantly raise the number of Arabs and Haredi women who hold development positions in the core of the high-tech industry.

Mode of operation

The candidates are screened in a special three-stage process that focuses on identifying a high learning potential and programming skills. The participants then undergo an intensive 3.5-month training program, comprised of up-to-date technological training, practical experience, and the acquisition of learning strategies and soft skills relevant for development processes and job placement in the field. The program is taught by leading lecturers and high-tech professionals from the partner high-tech companies and includes exposure to the industry. Upon program completion, the participants are accompanied throughout the placement process, including workshops, simulations, meetings with industry leaders, and personal guidance. The program also provides its participants with living and housing grants in Jerusalem.

In the numbers

of the participants have joined
leading high-tech companies