Two Beth Tfiloh Alumni Spend Summer Interning at Israeli Startup

A group that includes Jordan Lickstein, Lilly Polakoff and Ami Meoded
Jordan Lickstein (third from left), Lilly Polakoff (fifth from left) and Ami Meoded (sixth from left) (Courtesy)

This past summer, Lilly Polakoff and Jordan Lickstein, two alumni of Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School, interned with LittleOne.Care, an experience that Polakoff, a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, described as “a really great working experience.”

LittleOne.Care, a wearable tech startup founded in 2018, offers a wearable device — which will be available for purchase on World Children’s Day, Nov. 20 — that tracks environmental data about infants.

While the device sits on the outside of a child’s shirt and does not measure vital signs, Ami Meoded, chief marketing officer of LittleOne.Care, says the device will help parents meet their child’s core needs: “well-being, quality sleep, consistent and healthy nutrition, enjoyable activities and loving communication.”

Polakoff and Lickstein, the latter of whom is a junior at Lehigh University, are active members of their campus’ TAMID chapters and were connected to LittleOne.Care through the program. TAMID was founded in 2007 by two Jewish students at the University of Michigan to involve students in Israel’s economy.

At LittleOne.Care, Polakoff and Lickstein learned about the Israeli business community.

In the United States, said Meoded, interns are expected to meekly accept menial tasks and automatically say yes. But that’s not the case in Israel.

“I would like to hear your brain questioning,” Meoded said. “Be brave and say ‘no, this is not what I’m going to do. Let’s define it differently.’ It was hard for them to understand that the resistance is part of the growth of business.”

Meoded encouraged his interns to become “CEOs of their own missions,” tasking them with problems that needed solving, and leaving the door open for them to find solutions.

Lickstein built an automated support system for LittleOne, which scrapes emails, Instagram comments, Facebook messages and all other communications with customers and answer frequently asked questions.

“I was given complete control as to how we were to tackle that system as an intern, which was really this boosting thing,” he said. “I’m a college junior, but I’ve never been given that much responsibility [and] encouragement to play around, make sure it’s done in the right way.”

Meoded assigned Polakoff to project management and social media. And as the first intern to land in Israel, she also helped situate her fellow interns when they landed.

In addition, Meoded structured their time around Air Force-style briefings at the beginning and end of the day.

The morning briefs, explained Polakoff, were about “our plan for today. Goals, numbers, what to accomplish. Our afternoon debriefs were totally the opposite. ‘How did you feel about today?’”

“All of these things to see what we’re doing,” Lickstein said. “It’s a very efficient way to get started. Here’s what’s happened. Here’s where we’re going.”

Toward the end of the internship, Meoded took the interns into the desert in his jeep to camp, a trip both Lickstein and Polakoff noted. There, they discussed their career ambitions and passions, which is a topic of interest for Meoded.

Lickstein recalled Meoded saying, “‘I’ll take you to the desert Monday. Cancel work, I’m gonna take you down there, we’ll hang out, we’ll get to explore a part of Israel that no one else really does.’”

This combination of freedom, responsibility and accountability worked for the Beth Tfiloh alumni.

Polakoff and Lickstein are both continuing their work with LittleOne.Care into the school year, and now, they are getting paid.

Meoded is “probably the best boss I’ve ever worked for,” Lickstein said.

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