A growing number of young people do not feel connected to Israel’s proud history – or the Zionist values on which it was founded. As a result, an unprecedented number of Israelis are refusing to take up the responsibility of national service.
Since the country’s founding, the IAF has been one of its greatest symbols of national pride. It has produced many of Israel’s greatest leaders, not just in the military or in politics, but in all corners of society.
The Leadership Training draws on the values, history, and inspiration of Israel’s Air Force to empower Israeli youth and mold them into future leaders. A unique partnership between the IAF Center and the Air Force, the Israel Air Force Center is pioneering an innovative model of cooperation between educational and military institutions not found anywhere else in Israel. The IAF’s history, culture and values provide a framework to instill the principles of national service, the ideals of Zionism, and the tangible skills to lead.
IAF Center Youth Leadership Programs:
IAF Center Pre-Military Course (Gadna) – prepares young Israelis ages 16-18 for meaningful army service through a comprehensive educational program and intensive physical training. Highlights include a 3-day boot camp and an ongoing mentorship plan that preserves the connection with the IAF Center
IAF Center Youth Corps – targets young Israelis ages 17-19 from diverse populations including at-risk youth, Christians, ultra-Orthodox lone soldiers , and Bedouin Israelis. These youth develop leadership qualities while learning basic life skills. They absorb Israel Air Force heritage and Zionist values, enabling them to make a long-lasting contribution to Israeli society.
IAF Cadets - more than 3,000 cadets from the IAF's elite high schools have completed our specialized leadership, mentorship and character development programs. At the IAF Center, they learn about the history of the IDF and the IAF, discover how to apply the principles of Zionism to the 21st century, and hear from veteran and active duty IAF pilots and engineers.