“I was a computer geek, for two years all I did in my spare time was sit in front of a computer,” is how Pavel Kavaliov described himself. His passion for computers earned him 1st place in Intel’s “young scientist” competition.
Pavel (David) Kavaliov lived in Migdal Ha’Emek and noticed an advertisement for the Shuvu Scientific High School in Jerusalem. Since both his parents were scientists, the Kovaliav family moved to Jerusalem for the sake of Pavel’s education.
As a young teenager, Pavel developed a new method to integrate graphics onto the web in only a few months. This method earned him a scholarship for one year of higher education and a trip to California to represent Israel in the international Intel competition, sponsored by the Science Museum and Intel Corporation. Amir Elstein, the director of Intel in Israel, estimated that Kovaliov’s project should have taken 3 full time programmers a full year to develop after which they could have launched a start-up company.
Pavel was proud to present Israel at the competition, “I felt like I was representing the Jewish people. I was the only Jew among dozens of Europeans and Americans, and my appearance, as a religious Jew certainly drew stares.” Nonetheless, he was viewed very favorably.
At Shuvu, Pavel benefitted from both worlds: “For me to be in a Jewish environment, and at the same time, a technologically enriching one, is most important. My ideal fulfilled. I have Rabbis I can consult with and also science experts. Every day I learn how to be a better Jew.”