The elite Alonim Program offers a unique, prestigious, fascinating, and challenging track that forms part of the IDF’s Academic Reserve. The program includes a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree (with research thesis) in data science, awarded by the Technion in Haifa. Graduates of the program serve in research and development positions and in command and leadership positions in IDF divisions dealing with data and information. The Alonim Program trains outstanding students with advanced analytical skills and a high degree of curiosity who seek to advance and make a contribution in the field of data science research and development. The track includes both academic and military training, specially adapted for involvement in research and development in data-rich environments in the IDF, which are now a key component in Israel’s defense capabilities.
The track includes studies toward a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree (with research thesis) in data science. The duration of the track is four and a half years, with the first three years devoted to the completion of undergraduate studies, and the remaining 18 months to the completion of graduate studies.
Program Administration and Benefits
The Alonim Program is overseen by a special administrative section of the IDF Intelligence Corps.
Special benefits of the program include:
- Individual attention and close supervision from the program administration
- Individual academic support from a Technion faculty member who acts as academic coordinator of the Alonim Program
- A grant of NIS 5,000 per year, in addition to grants from the IDF Academic Reserve
- Eligibility to live in university accommodation (at cost) for the duration of the program
- Tuition scholarship and living stipend throughout the master’s degree program
- Individual placement in prestigious positions in the IDF
- Social activities and volunteering activities in the community
- Enrichment workshops and lectures on professional data science issues
Placement in the IDF
Because Alonim is an elite program, it includes a process of individual placement for each graduate, placing them in prestigious core positions in elite IDF units, with consideration given to personal preferences.
The military training elements of the Alonim Program have been developed to complement the academic studies in order to prepare students for leadership roles in data science in the IDF, a field that is vital to the defense of the state. These elements include:
- Basic military training at the end of the first year of studies
- Social bonding activities, experiential trips, and volunteering days
- Educational activities to introduce students to:
- The structure of the IDF and the defense establishment, and the main challenges they face today
- The technological units in the IDF and the defense establishment that deal with data science, to give students advance familiarity ahead of their placement
- Participation in the IDF Officer Training Course immediately following completion of studies
Admissions Process and Requirements
- Stage 1. Psychometric testing. Minimum requirement for the admissions process is a score of 690.
- Stage 2. Registration for the IDF Academic Reserve: Entering contact details into the system and registering for the Alonim track.
- Stage 3. Registration for the Technion
- Stage 4. Following initial assessment of personal details and psychometric scores, suitable candidates will be invited to a personal interview and a psychological assessment.
- Stage 5. Technion admissions committee
- Stage 6. Final admissions committee, with the participation of the Head of the IDF Academic Reserve
Note: Registering for the Alonim Program does not interfere in any way with other IDF selection processes. The program is equally open to both young men and young women.