Letter from Our CEO

June 9, 2023


Dear Friends,

Three weeks ago I attended Tel Aviv University's (TAU) 2023 Board of Governors (BOG) convening and felt an incredible sense of pride about the leadership position the University occupies. Ten years ago, TAU boldly announced a billion-dollar global campaign, the first ever attempted in Israel, to raise funds for research, building infrastructure, and expanding the campus. The University was the first in Israel to embark on a billion-dollar campaign. This past May, thanks to everyone who contributed, we celebrated its successful conclusion. Building on this momentum, TAU will shortly announce the next campaign. We thought you would enjoy watching this short virtual tour of campus and seeing some of the impact of your support.

On Monday, Open AI CEO Sam Altman visited Tel Aviv University as part of his world tour urging governments to develop regulations to ensure AI is used responsibly. It is meaningful to note that Sam and his team chose TAU's campus, along with a visit to TAU alum and President of Israel Isaac Herzog, to share their message in Israel. During a fireside chat with Professor Nadav Cohen, a former Zuckerman Fellow with TAU's Blavatnik School of Computer Science, Sam and Open AI’s Chief Scientist Ilya Sutskever discussed the opportunities and risks associated with AI.

During the BOG the Institute for Integrative Psychedelic Research was inaugurated. This Institute, the first of its kind in Israel, has a vision to revolutionize mental health and become a global leader in the scientific exploration of psychedelics and psychoactive medicine.

A breakthrough study from Professor Yuval Nir's lab in the Faculty of Medicine developed a method of deep brain stimulation during sleep to improve memory consolidation. The study shows that the brain strengthens memories between the hippocampus and frontal cortex, making it the first time scientists were able to see the precise processes that are at work in human brains during sleep. The joint study with researchers from UCLA was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the European Research Council (ERC), and the US National Science Foundation, among others.

Cyber Week, one of the top international cybersecurity events in the world, will take place on Tel Aviv University's campus beginning June 26. Major General (Retired) Professor Isaac Ben-Israel is the conference chairman, founder of the event, and the founder of Israel's cyber program, as well as the former Chairman of Israel's Space Agency. If you are interested, I encourage you to register and watch the opening plenary which is broadcast live each year.

Supporting Tel Aviv University means you are investing in Israel and contributing to the many successes coming from this incredible country. It is your support that has helped make TAU a global leader in research, education, and impact around the world. I hope that you are as proud as I am of what has been accomplished to date, and that you will continue to be a partner so that we are able to reach new heights in the future.

Wishing you a shabbat shalom.

Jennifer Gross
Chief Executive Officer