For the second consecutive year, the Union of Italian Jewish Communities announced that students interested in applying to Israeli universities will be able to take the standardized admission tests in Italian.
The Psychometric Entrance Test – an equivalent of the American SATs – is a tool for predicting academic performance and is required by all major Israeli universities to screen applicants to various departments. Along with Hebrew, English, Russian, French, and Spanish, since 2013 the exam can be taken in Italian, as well, thanks to a project promoted by the Union of Italian Jewish Communities. Students willing to study in Israel will be able to take the test on February 17th, 2015, in three different locations: Rome, Milan and Israel.
The PET is offered in Italian on the condition that at least 100 students will register by October 13th. Last year two hundred students registered, and a brief preparatory course was taught, as well.
Carol Halwani, 20, an Italian student who just enrolled in Bar-Ilan University’s International Program, where she will study Communication. “I took the test in Jerusalem, during my gap year,” she said. “Taking it in Italian was a huge advantage – I felt more comfortable.”
“For those who want to study in Israel, the road ahead is full of obstacles,” said David Zebuloni, 19, who took the PET in Italian last year in Milan and is currently attending a Bnei Akiva one-year program. However, he added, this project is making things definitely easier.
Zebuloni added that the initiative might also encourage more young Italian Jews to make alyiah. “The fact that they can now take the Psychometric in Italian is an extraordinary opportunity to make their dream come true.”
*Simone Somekh is a student at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, and writes as a freelancer for the Jewish Italian press.