Minister Elkin: we will help advance the SCE’s development plans
Minister of Higher and Extracurricular Education, Zeev Elkin, and Chairperson of the PBC – the Planning and Budgeting Committee of the Council for Higher Education, Prof. Yaffa Zilbershats, visited the SCE’s Be’er Sheva campus and met with SCE President, Prof. Jehuda Haddad and with senior management members.
Prof. Haddad presented the current challenges entailed in operating the Ashdod college campus, as well as future plans for building a campus in a new complex that will enable the SCE to significantly increase the number of students in Ashdod, from 2,500 today to 10,000 in the future. “The Ashdod campus has enormous potential. We built it based on the view that it would be aligned with the plans in the area. The Council for Higher Education decided that it would operate as a branch, and currently requires the SCE to teach in Ashdod only programs taught at the Be’er Sheva Campus”, said Haddad, and asked Minister Elkin and Prof. Zilbershats, “to grant the Ashdod campus academic independence”.
Prof. Haddad also noted that the SCE is currently advancing the building of an architecture campus in Be’er Sheva’s Old City.
Minister Elkin said that his office would help advance the SCE’s development plans in Ashdod and Be’er Sheva. He also noted that: “Clearly the Ashdod campus has its uniqueness. The solution must be modular. We will try to help the college as much as possible”.
Prof. Haddad, who was among the first to welcome the establishment of a ministry dedicated to higher education, said that this was a necessary step and should have already been taken several years ago. “Minister Elkin is familiar with academia, and it deserves, academia, a ministry and a minister who will advance higher education and elevate it to its worthy place – at the center of discourse and action in Israeli society”.
According to Haddad, “Academia in Israel is the State of Israel’s safety net in the world, and one of the cornerstones of its national, economic, social and international resilience. Technological innovation emanating from the halls of academia, and found to be good and worthy in the fight against the corona, proves that Israeli academia is alive and well, breathing, kicking and even capable of deriving the best from its researchers, and therefore, particularly now, the government must promote and advance higher education, research and innovation”.