Sam, USA

March 16, 2012

Hey Adam, what’s up?

I’m going to the army! I got the zav rishan, and I’m supposed go for the initial meeting, so I’m headed back to Israel now. I don’t have a copy of my college diploma, and it’s a long tedious process to request one from the school if you are an alum (pain in the butt with wait time). I’m not looking to get an elite job in the army that requires rare skills, just serve, do my time and then get married and stuff. I wanted to ask, can I just show up to the office and do the process without bringing any proof of education? Or really can I just enlist without having to bring it at all? I was under the impression that some people even enlist without graduating high school, but I thought I’d ask in case.

Do you happen to know anyone who can speed things up for the gius day? I’m wondering if it takes a while after the zav rishan to get in uniform and get rolling, but I have heard of individuals starting as soon as the same week (!) as the zav rishan because of knowing someone who can just cut the red tape for them, or because these individuals knew the right thing to say or right office to call to just move up the gius date. Any advice is appreciated!

Hey Sam,

First off, mazal tov on making aliyah! To answer your questions succinctly, I would try to get a copy of your diploma. While it’s not imperative that you have it, I know at my tzav rishon they asked to see my diploma when I said I had already completed college. Even a photo-copy of the original would be good enough. However, if you really can’t get a hold of it, I don’t really foresee it being a problem if, like you said, you don’t want a specific job that would require a college education. Worst case scenario, I’d just show up at the office and tell them the truth. It’s not like they’re not going to let you in the army because you can’t produce a college diploma…I’d say you’re fine.

As for speeding up the process…no, I don’t know anyone personally that can help with that sort of stuff. But from my personal experience I got my draft date the same day of my tzav rishon. It was a very long day, but at the very end I was sent to an officer and simply just requested to go in as soon as possible – I’d recommend doing the same thing. Tell the person you’re interviewing with, any officers you meet, etc. that you want to go in as soon as possible. It was late October when I had my tzav rishon and my giyus date was for mid-December. Just be persistent with the guys in the misrad ha-giyus – I literally had to go in there every day for a month or more before they would even give me a tzav rishon. Then one day when I wasn’t expecting it, they threw me in to my tzav rishon right there on the spot. So, just be prepared for anything, be pushy and persistent. For example, in my situation when I showed up they said I had to wait a year after I made aliyah to be eligible for the army – obviously not true.

Anyways, good luck at the misrad hagiyus. Let me know if you have any other questions as you go through the process. Another great resource for information (and they also know people that can help with the “red tape,”) is the Lone Soldier Center, check them out at



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