February 8, 2007 / 20 Shevat 5767
“As a student, it is always difficult to make ends meet. I work as a security officer at an industrial zone and I had intended to put in long hours in the summer to save up some money because I was getting married. But the war put an end to that. Now, thanks to the Jewish Agency scholarship, I’m not sinking financially and I am continuing my studies.”
“Words cannot describe how grateful I am for this scholarship,” stresses Kizner. “It gives me added motivation to work harder in my studies to be worthy of the money which has so selflessly been given me.”
Roman Kizner is using the Jewish Agency for Israel scholarship he recently received to pay a large portion of this year’s academic tuition fee; he sees it as an extraordinary wedding present from the Jewish people. On August 31, Roman married his girlfriend Rima. The wedding took place only a few days after he was released from his IDF reserve duty. He served 29 days in an elite combat unit, spending most of the time in Lebanon near the Syrian border.
“We had fixed the date for our wedding for the end of August,” Roman explains. “For a while, as the war raged, it looked as though it wasn’t going to happen. Although, in all honesty, I worried more about staying alive. All around me soldiers were tragically killed and injured.”
“In the end, the army released me the day before the wedding, a few days before my comrades. They even gave me a 48-hour leave the week before the wedding so I could buy a ring and help with the arrangements.”
Kizner, 26, from Ashkelon, is a third year Civil Engineering undergraduate student at the College of Judea and Samaria. In 1990, he immigrated to Israel from the Ukraine when he was a child. Like most Israeli students, he cannot afford the luxury of devoting himself solely to his studies and works full time as a security officer at the Afek Industrial Zone near Rosh Ha’ayin. And while the army did all it could to let him get married on time, they were unable to assist him financially. The Jewish Agency stepped in to help.