Monday, February 24, 2014

Orot Israel College’s Briah School Hosts Complementary Medicine Conference

By Sarah Bar Asher – Founder and Head, Briah School for Complementary Medicine, Orot Israel College

Crate after crate of organic eggs, sourdough bread, medicinal herbs, and natural cosmetics filled the lobby of Orot Israel College’s graduate studies building. The reason for all the healthy goodness? Orot’s Briah School was hosting its inaugural conference on complementary medicine.
Briah, which opened in the fall, invited the public to learn about the world of complementary medicine. The conference encompassed five lectures on a wide range of topics, and the attendees were offered a variety of delicious and healthy snacks, including dates, baked pretzels, mineral water, and tea.

Rav Professor Neria Guttel, President of Orot Israel College, greeted the attendees and spoke about a physician’s right to heal, based on the words: "וְרַפֹּא יְרַפֵּא" (“and he shall provide for his healing” – Shmot 21:19). Next, Mrs. Sarah Bar Asher, Briah’s founder and head, focused on the food industry and nutrition. Her talk revolved around questions such as: Are the ingredient lists on food labels complete? Is low-sodium salt healthy, or is it the worst type of salt on the market? Why do the spices used in restaurants and hotels undergo radiation? Mrs. Anat Felmon reviewed the basic principles of Chinese medicine, and Mrs. Adi Yogev explained how medicinal herbs can be used to treat children’s winter illnesses. Dr. Eli Topper examined classic and modern homeopathy, and Mr. Avraham Dahan discussed cinnamon and how it was used by Jewish physicians from the Talmudic era through the Middle Ages.

At the conference’s conclusion, the participants raised their glasses and enjoyed a special wine prepared by Mr. Avraham Dahan, according to an ancient recipe attributed to Ezra HaSofer.

Master’s Degree Ceremony

On Tuesday, 27 Shvat 5774 (January 28, 2014) some 120 Orot Israel College graduate students – representing a broad spectrum of the Israeli public – were awarded master’s degrees in educational counseling, Tanach, and Rabbinic Literature during a gala ceremony held at our Elkana campus.

At present, approximately 560 graduate students study at Orot which now boasts a relatively new and prestigious Master's degree program in Educational Administration and Organization. Orot’s student body hails from every corner of Israel – from the Golan Heights all the way down to Eilat. B’ezrat Hashem, next year, we hope to open a graduate program in mathematics.

The speakers at the degree ceremony included Rav Professor Neria Guttel, President of Orot Israel College and Rav Chaim Fogel, chairman of Orot’s board of trustees. Rav Chaim Saban, Orot’s vice president, and Rav Dr. Moshe Rachimi, head of the graduate school, were also in attendance.

In his keynote address, Professor Avraham Steinberg, Israel Prize laureate, spoke about the challenges and importance of integrating Torah and science.

Professor Yisrael Aumann Participates in Orot Israel College’s Annual Faculty Colloquium

by Rav Yechiel Lash – Dean of Studies, Rechovot Campus, and Colloquium Coordinator

On Tuesday, 20 Shvat 5774 (January 21, 2014), Orot Israel College held its annual faculty colloquium in Elkana. Various faculty members delivered scholarly lectures to their colleagues on a wide variety of subjects.

Nobel Prize laureate Professor Yisrael Aumann participated in the colloquium’s first session, chaired by Orot Israel College President Rav Professor Neria Guttel. Rav Professor Guttel thanked Professor Aumann and recited the blessing of "ברוך שחלק מחכמתו ליראיו" (“Blessed is He Who apportioned of His wisdom to those who fear Him”) in Professor Aumann’s honor, and then Professor Aumann delivered a fascinating lecture about religion and science. He noted that he observes the Torah’s mitzvot because he loves to do so. Or as he put, “it’s enjoyable!” Following his well-received talk, Professor Aumann took questions from the audience, which also included students from Orot’s Excellence in Education Program.

Chaired by Dr. Yael Areli and Rabbanit Dr. Lea Vizel respectively, the second and third sessions were comprised of an additional six lectures – three at each session – pertaining to the Tanach, the Oral Torah, Chassidut, and Jewish history. The list of speakers included Mrs. Shulamit Lehman, Rav Dr. Yosef Priel, Dr. Michael Ben-Ari, Dr. Michael Gross, Dr. Dror Hovera, and Dr. Ayal Davidson.

All the participants agreed that the colloquium was a huge success, and in spite of the late hour and the packed schedule, many not only stayed until the very end of the proceedings but remained afterwards to ask questions.

Orot Israel College Receives Prestigious Jerusalem Prize

Orot Israel College, headed by President Rav Professor Neria Guttel, was recently awarded the prestigious Jerusalem Prize for Education. The prize was given for Orot’s outstanding achievements and contributions to Israeli education.
Education Minister MK Rav Shai Piron presented the award. In his remarks, he stated that under Rav Professor Guttel’s leadership, Orot has become the country’s leading and largest educational college, whose primary focuses are academic, religious and pedagogical excellence. Rav Piron also noted the remarkable vision, creativity, and innovation that characterize Orot and its achievements. He explained that as the minister charged with overseeing the country’s educational system, he has the unique ability to appreciate and observe the results of Orot’s numerous accomplishments.
Orot Israel College was founded in 5739 (1978) by Rav Dr. Yehuda Felix. In 5768 (2008), Orot doubled in size and stature when it merged with Moreshet Yaakov College and thus became the largest and most diversified academic educational college within Israel’s religious-public educational system.
Rav Chaim Saban, Orot Israel College’s vice president; and Rav Chaim Fogel, chairman of the board of trustees, participated in the award ceremony.