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Canada's Governor General Visits Hebrew University's Faculty of Medicine, Mrs. Johnston Visits Early Childhood Programs

03/11/2016

Governor General discusses collaborative medical research partnerships between Canada and Israel at IMRIC, the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada

The Governor General of Canada, David Johnston, and his wife Sharon Johnston visited the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Faculty of Medicine today. The 28th Governor General of Canada, and the first to make a state visit to Israel, Johnston was accompanied by a delegation that discussed collaborative medical research partnerships between Canada and Israel.

The delegation visited IMRIC, the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada — one of the most innovative biomedical research organizations worldwide, bringing together Canadian and Israeli scientists to find solutions to the world's most serious medical problems through a multidisciplinary approach (www.imric.org).

The President of the Hebrew University, Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson, welcomed The Governor General and Mrs. Johnston, saying: “When you travel abroad you want to feel at home, and here at the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Medicine you can feel right at home. At the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada, Canadians are directly involved in the translational medicine taking place here. Together, Israel and Canada are translating science into medicine and, ultimately, healing the world.”

Governor General Johnston replied, “You greeted us by saying ‘Welcome home,’ and you explained why: the common ground we have, and the sharing of knowledge. The diplomacy of knowledge is very enabling, and that is what we celebrate at an institute like this, a Canada-Israel institute of medicine.”

Prof. Haya Lorberboum-Galski, Chair of the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada, described the numerous collaborative medical research partnerships between Canada and Israel taking place at the Institute for Medical Research-Israel Canada. Among these are the Alex U. Soyka Pancreatic Cancer Research Project (link); the Joseph and Wolf Lebovic Cancer Genomics and Immunotherapy Program; the Canada-Israel International Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Consortium (link); and a collaboration with the Montreal Neurological Institute. Prof. Abraham Fainsod and Prof. Ehud Cohen then described their research into Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and Alzheimer's Disease, respectively.

Sharon Johnston Holds Round-Table Discussion with Early Childhood Program and HIPPY Israel Leaders:

On Wednesday, Sharon Johnston visited the National Council of Jewish Women Research Institute for Innovation in Education to meet with leaders of various Early Childhood Programs. As honorary patron of HIPPY (Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters) Canada (http://hippycanada.ca/wordpress), she met with leaders of the HIPPY Israel program (http://hippy-international.org/israel) to learn about services offered by the organization. She heard from several mothers who said that participating in HIPPY has helped them become more effective parents, and she discussed common challenges, lessons and experiences among the Canadian and Israeli programs.

HIPPY Israel and its sibling early childhood programs serve some 3,000 families among Israel’s native-born Arab and Jewish communities and immigrant communities from Ethiopia, Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Operating in over 70 sites, HIPPY Israel is part of the government’s New Beginnings initiative designed to extricate preschoolers and school-age children from risk and poverty.  The Ministry of Education, education and social services departments of local authorities and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem all contribute to the operation of HIPPY in Israel. Founded in the late 1960s, HIPPY Israel is the most veteran of all HIPPY programs worldwide (http://hippy-international.org), which are dedicated to the principles of equal educational opportunity and social inclusion, working with communities and families who face socio-economic challenges, helping parents and carers to nurture children’s readiness for school and their motivation to reach their highest potential. 

The visits to the Hebrew University come in the context of forging greater ties between Canadian and Israeli innovation and educational institutions. Prior to visiting Israel, the Governor General wrote in an op-ed, "We are looking beyond our borders for ideas and innovation – and what better place to look than Israel, a leader in new ideas and innovative thinking. We have much to learn from each other."

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is Israel's leading academic and research institution and is ranked among the top 100 universities in the world. Founded in 1918 by visionaries including Albert Einstein, the Hebrew University is a pluralistic institution where science and knowledge are advanced for the benefit of humankind. The Hebrew University produces one third of all civilian research in Israel. For more information, please visit http://new.huji.ac.il/en.

Photos available for download:

Governor General’s Visit to Hebrew University Faculty of Medicine

—Photo 1: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu161103_johnston1.JPG The President of the Hebrew University, Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson, welcomes the Governor General of Canada, David Johnston (Photo: Bruno Charbit for Hebrew University)

—Photo 2: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu161103_johnston2.jpg From left: IMRIC researcher Prof. Ehud Cohen; Governor General David Johnston; the President of the Hebrew University, Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson; Chair of the Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada, Prof. Haya Lorberboum-Galski; Mrs. Sharon Johnston; Dean of the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Medicine, Prof. David Lichtstein; and IMRIC researcher Prof. Abraham Fainsod.  (Photo: Bruno Charbit for Hebrew University)

Mrs. Johnston’s Visit to Hebrew University Early Childhood Programs

—Photo 1: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu161102_hippy1.jpg: Prof. Gad Yair, Director of the NCJW Research Center for Innovation in Education at the Hebrew University, discusses the HIPPY Israel program with Mrs. Johnston. (Photo: Dov Smith/Hebrew University)

—Photo 2: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu161102_hippy2.jpg: Hayat Abd Elhak, an instructor for the past 18 years in the HIPPY Israel program, presents Mrs. Johnston with a bracelet she made for her, inscribed with the Hebrew University early education programs’ motto, “From Birth to University.” “I will wear this to the state dinner tonight,” said Mrs. Johnston. (Photo: Dov Smith/Hebrew University)

Canada's Governor General Visits Hebrew University's Faculty of Medicine, Mrs. Johnston Visits Early Childhood Programs
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University of Toronto and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Deepen Ties in the Fields of Biomedical Science and Social Work

19/05/2016

(See also: Canadian Friends of the Hebrew University (CFHU) press release — Premier Wynne On-Hand To Announce New Partnerships Between Ontario And The Hebrew University)

The University of Toronto and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem are pleased to deepen their partnership in the fields of social work and bio-innovation, which will strengthen the exchange of students, faculty, and ideas between the academic and entrepreneurial environments of the two universities.

Biomedical Science

The University of Toronto’s Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering is joining forces with the Alexander Grass Center for Bioengineering at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem to support student research and study abroad, clinical and academic faculty travel, and research collaboration.

The Jerusalem-Toronto Bio-Innovation Partnership will provide support to students in engineering, biology, and computer science to conduct research in the partner country over a 12-week period. An intensive 8-week educational program – the Transdisciplinary Innovation Program – that weaves together computer vision, big data, and bioengineering will also be offered to students from the University of Toronto, enabling interaction with Nobel laureates, work under the mentorship of Israeli scientists and entrepreneurs, and the opportunity for students to pitch ideas to investors.

The partnership will also build on the strengths of the two institutions in the biomedical field by fostering exchange aimed at developing technological solutions to medical system needs. Faculty and student groups will travel between the two countries to advance the collaboration, with a joint BioDesign program bringing together engineers, clinicians, and business and engineering students to share and create knowledge with tangible impact.

Social Work

The University of Toronto's Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Paul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare are entering into a partnership facilitating student exchange and practicum placement. Under the agreement, full-time graduate students from each university will be eligible to study at the partner university and, in the case of University of Toronto students, also participate in experiential learning during their coursework in Israel.

The deepening of ties between the two universities builds on a rich history of institutional engagement and faculty-to-faculty collaboration. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is the University of Toronto’s second largest university partner in medical sciences in Israel. The University of Toronto, in turn, is The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s second largest university partner internationally in medical sciences. The two institutions also share student mobility agreements – which, for students at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs, include a long tradition of study at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Rothberg International School with the generous support of the Canadian Friends of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

University of Toronto President Meric Gertler expressed strong support for the new partnerships. “The forthcoming projects with The Hebrew University of Jerusalem are important to the University of Toronto,” said Gertler. “They underscore a commitment on the part of both universities to harness the power of Israel’s and Canada’s brightest minds to find solutions to the world's pressing social and medical problems. They will provide exciting opportunities in the near-term and, I believe, stand to have meaningful long-run impact by virtue of the skills investment and advances they entail.”

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s President, Prof. Menahem Ben-Sasson, said: “The Hebrew University is very pleased to expand its partnership with the University of Toronto. This agreement will bring about new exchanges of people and ideas between two of the world’s leading centers of research and academia. Furthermore it will drive cooperation in medical, social and entrepreneurial studies and research that will benefit Canada, Israel and the entire world.”

The University of Toronto is actively engaged with Israeli partners and is among the top 5 research partners globally for many of Israel’s leading universities.

About the University of Toronto

The University of Toronto, Canada’s leading research intensive university, has assembled one of the strongest research and teaching faculties in North America, presenting top students at all levels with an intellectual environment unmatched in breadth and depth on any other Canadian campus.

The University of Toronto consistently ranks first among Canadian universities, and the latest Times Higher Education Ranking places the institution in the global top twenty. As a measure of impact, the publications of the University of Toronto’s researchers are the world’s third most cited. University of Toronto faculty are also widely recognized for their teaching strengths and commitment to graduate supervision. Established in 1827, the University of Toronto today operates in downtown Toronto, Mississauga and Scarborough, as well as in 9 renowned partner hospitals.

About The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is Israel’s leading university and premier research institution. The Hebrew University is ranked internationally among the top 100 universities in the world, and first among Israeli universities. Serving 23,500 students from 85 countries, the Hebrew University produces a third of Israel’s civilian research and its faculty are at the forefront of the international academic and scientific communities. Founded in 1918 by such innovative thinkers as Albert Einstein, Martin Buber and Sigmund Freud, the Hebrew University is a pluralistic institution where science and knowledge are advanced for the benefit of humankind. For more information, please visit http://new.huji.ac.il/en.

  • PHOTO 1: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu160518_hu_ut1.jpg
  • PHOTO 2: http://media.huji.ac.il/new/photos/hu160518_hu_ut2.jpg
  • CAPTION: Premier Kathleen Wynne of Ontario witnesses the signing on May 18, 2016 of an agreement to facilitate coop between the University of Toronto's Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Paul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare. Pictured, from left: Prof. Mimi Ajzenstadt, Dean of the Hebrew University's Paul Baerwald School of Social Work and Social Welfare; Prof. Oron Shagrir, Vice-Rector of the Hebrew University; and Judith Wolfson, Vice-President, International, Government and Institutional Relations for the University of Toronto. (Photo: Dov Smith / Hebrew University)
University of Toronto and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Deepen Ties in the Fields of Biomedical Science and Social Work
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