ISRAEL - Arabs Welcome in Israel’s High-Tech Sector

Arno Froese

“For an Arab student, it is very intimidating to go to a job interview with a Jewish CEO. You just assume the odds are stacked against you,” says Diyaa Shridi, CTO [Chief Technology Officer] of the Innovation Lab of the Japanese insurance giant SOMPO in Israel. “When leaders within Israel’s hi-tech scene expressly state that they want to hire more Arabs, that is the most encouraging thing they can hear.”

“I grew up in Umm al-Fahm, but my parents sent me to a Christian school in Haifa, one of the best private schools in the country,” Shridi says. “It was important for them to give me the best education they could afford. After that, I studied software engineering at Ben Gurion University. But an Arab graduating university doesn’t start off with the advantages that Israelis get after serving in the army. My friends would tell me to give up, that I would never get a job in tech, and I had to make an effort to ignore them. But it was clear that I would have to work a lot harder to join the tech sector and all of the luxuries associated with it.”

“When I was starting out, there weren’t as many jobs available as today,” Shridi says. “Arabs coming out of university now have a much better chance of landing a good job than 10 years ago.”

Shridi now works with the Tsofen organization to promote hi-tech in Arab society, speaking in schools and bringing groups to visit his company’s offices in Tel Aviv. He is encouraged by the changes he sees.

“There are a growing number of Arab students studying science subjects, including women,” he says. “About 33% of all computer science students at the Technion are now Arab, and 40% of those are women. My professor from Ben Gurion University tells me that while there were once just two Arab students studying computer science there, now there are more than 100.”, 7 June 2021

Arno's Commentary

Here we see technology as a platform for unity. Borders, nationalities, languages, customs, and traditions are no obstacle for people with extraordinary talents. Such people are sought after across the globe. Nevertheless, as Mr. Shridi states, “At work we are equals, but when we get home, our worlds are not equal.”

Will that ever change? Most likely not. We read in Scripture that during the end stages of the end times, there will only be two groups of people: those who believe, and those who reject salvation. Jesus said: “Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us” (Luke 23:30). In Revelation 6:15, we read that all have become equal: the rulers of the world, the rich and mighty, the free and the bondman. That is yet to come.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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