Letter from Our CEO

March 2021


Dear Friends,

The month of March brings with it the promise of Spring, early Passover, the one-year anniversary of the global pandemic, and the beginning of working from home. A year ago, many of us (myself included) thought working remotely would last for a few weeks or months. One year later, I believe we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Scientists have collaborated in a nearly unprecedented manner, resulting in vaccines becoming more readily available in the US as the national rollout seems to be picking up speed. With every person who is vaccinated, we are one step closer to seeing the light.

Scientists and researchers at Tel Aviv University (TAU) continue in their quest to find ways to fight COVID beyond vaccines. During this past year, there were 140 Coronavirus research projects initiated by TAU scientists across campus. Most recently, Dr. Ines Zucker from the School of Mechanical Engineering at TAU led a joint study that found the Coronavirus could be destroyed within minutes by gaseous ozone, which can be produced synthetically indoors. In addition to teaching (93,000 Zoom classes during the spring semester) and doing research, many professors at TAU were asked to advise various government ministries on how to recover and move forward.

Monday, March 8, is International Women's Day, and I am proud to say that there are so many women to celebrate at Tel Aviv University that it is difficult to choose who to highlight. Instead, I invite you to join in a TAU Alumni Organization webinar, "A Woman's Place: Female Perspectives on Diplomacy, Media, Science, and Innovation," featuring Professor Milette Shamir, TAU VP for International Academic Collaborations; HE Tzipi Hotovely, Israeli Ambassador to the UK; Professor Tova Milo, Dean of the Faculty of Exact Science at TAU; and Dr. Shimrit Perkol-Finkel, TAU Life Sciences Alumna and Co-Founder and CEO of ECOncrete Tech Ltd. To register, please click here. In addition, we will be featuring different women leaders on AFTAU's social media this month, so please follow us via the social media links below to read more about these women making a difference.

The NCJW Women and Gender Studies Program at Tel Aviv University is a groundbreaking program that both celebrates women and promotes social change while encouraging students to view the world through a gender-based lens. It's the first bachelor's degree-granting program of its kind in the Middle East. Under the direction of Professor Daphna Hacker, the program uses an interdisciplinary approach combining courses from the faculties of law, humanities, art, and social sciences and stresses critical analysis of the role of women and other minorities.

Although life dramatically changed over the past year, Tel Aviv University never ceased its quest to make the world a better place. Research continued, medical discoveries and breakthroughs were announced, and TAU remained unwavering in its commitment to making the world better, healthier, and more socially aware. The pioneering TAU IMPACT initiative has academized social involvement by teaching students a socially responsible mindset and providing them with hands-on community experiences. Students combine classes with field work in areas that interest them, in collaboration with local NGOs and government agencies. Over 10,000 Israeli children, youth, adults, and senior citizens benefit from the program annually. While that is significant, we are aiming higher. TAU's goal is to increase the number of citizens helped to over 50,000 annually.

It is your steadfast support that enables AFTAU to do our part in ensuring that Tel Aviv University can continue its efforts to make the world a better place. Please click here if you would like to view TAU's 2020 Annual Report and learn more about the past academic year during Corona days. Thank you for being our partners.

Wishing you and your families a Shabbat shalom,

Jennifer Gross
Chief Executive Officer