Scholarship Helps Student Balance Top Internship with Graduate Studies
Legal Scholar David Bodenheim hopes to pay forward donor generosity.
Several years ago, David Bodenheim was a father of baby triplets. He had a full-time job in real estate during the day and studied for a bachelor’s degree in law at a community college at night.
It was at that frenetic juncture in his life that he decided to make a change.
“It was my personal goal to study law, a field that always interested me because of the intellectual challenges it offers both in academia and in practice,” said Bodenheim, who is now in his second year of a master’s degree at TAU’s Buchmann Faculty of Law. Even though he had a lot on his plate, he knew that if he didn’t start then, it would never happen.
Bodenheim has always known how to seek out opportunities for personal development and fulfillment. Growing up in Jerusalem as one of eight children, his parents couldn’t afford the extracurricular activities and enrichment classes he craved. So he convinced his brother-in-law to start a boys’ choir. He says the experience imbued him with confidence, especially when speaking in public—an important skill for a lawyer.
After earning his undergraduate degree, Bodenheim was accepted to TAU’s LL.M. program in civil and commercial law. Alongside his studies, he is completing an internship at Herzog Fox & Neeman (HFN), one of Israel’s largest and most reputable law firms.
A Match Made at TAU
Yet, he couldn’t finance his graduate studies alone.
He applied for financial aid, and TAU matched him with the Wahl scholarship to fund his studies. “Receiving the scholarship basically made the choice for me of going to Tel Aviv University,” said Bodenheim. The choice was right. “TAU is an excellent place, and I’ve met amazing people.”
“As a small person in the world, being able to get a scholarship that would help me through school was an amazing feeling. It’s a tremendous advantage not having to pay full tuition. It allows me to focus on my internship and my academic studies.” He is also part of Trailblazers: The Program for Integrating the Ultra-Orthodox into Tel Aviv University. The Program offers a special admission track and support services for ultra-Orthodox students.
In the meantime, Bodenheim is not slowing down. Alongside his internship, he plans to pursue a PhD at TAU and aspires to eventually become a partner at HFN.
“Scholarships in general give a tremendous help to different people coming from different backgrounds who don’t have the financial options to pursue advanced degrees,” he said. “It helps people change the world.”
“My scholarship made a huge difference in my life. I hope to be able to pass that on in the future as a donor myself.”
– By Melanie Takefman