Overview of the University of Haifa
A Dynamic, Diverse Research Institution
Israel’s youngest research university, and its most pluralistic and progressive institution of higher learning, was established in 1963 under the joint auspices of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Haifa Municipality. In 1972, the University of Haifa gained academic accreditation as a separate institution from the Israel Council for Higher Education.
Linking academic excellence, social responsibility, and service to the community represents one of the University’s most important goals. In an atmosphere of coexistence, tolerance, and mutual respect, the University’s students study together and represent all walks of Israeli life: sons and daughters of both veteran cities and development towns, kibbutzim and moshavim, new immigrants, Jews, Arabs, Druzes, and IDF officers and security personnel.
In the current academic year, over 20,000 students are enrolled in degree programs (B.A., M.A., or Ph.D.) across the University’s six faculties: Humanities, Social Sciences, Sciences and Science Education, Law, Social Welfare and Health Studies, and Education; and five Schools: Business Administration, Social Work, History, Public Health, and Political Sciences.
Research: Innovative and cutting-edge research is concentrated in 68 centers and institutes, representing a wide variety of subjects and fields. Among them: the study of psychological stress, information processing and decision-making, evolution, the Holocaust, maritime studies, natural and environmental resources, shipping, and aviation. Research facilities include: The Jewish-Arab Center; Herzl Institute for the Study of Zionism and Israel; Study of Crime, Law, and Society; Study of Pilgrimage, Tourism and Recreation; Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Emotions; International Brain and Behavior Research Center; Center for Democratic Studies; Center for Law and Technology; Center for Research of Education for Peace; and the Center for National Security Studies and Geostrategy. Notably, IBM established its largest research center outside the United States on the University campus.
Community: The University of Haifa has deep ties to the community and numerous community-based programs. Along with developing academic excellence, the University assists many students in gaining a higher education through its Pre-Academic Unit and helps hundreds of students overcome economic obstacles through its Social Involvement Unit. The Continuing Education and External Studies Unit offers special curricula for a range of professions, enabling over 5,000 students to enroll in advanced training courses.
Library Resources: The University Library, the second largest in Israel, possesses a catalogue of roughly two million books and non-book items. It contains outstanding special collections, including works in law, rare books, shipping, and art volumes and artifacts. The University devotes great attention to the arts and actively cultivates cultural growth and development. Art galleries, murals by well-known Israeli artists, and impressive sculptures are integral parts of the campus environment. The University’s new Arts Center is an academic center for the study of the arts, designed by the noted architect, Haim Kehat. The Arts Center was constructed with the aid of significant gifts from Herta and Paul Amir, and the Hecht Foundation, and is named for the late Dr. Reuven Hecht.
Hecht Museum: The Hecht Museum was the first museum in Israel to be located on a university campus. Its Archeological Wing displays finds from the Hecht Collection, as well as thematic exhibits: ancient industries and crafts; and Phoenicians on the northern coast of Israel in the Biblical period. The Museum’s Ancient Ship Wing, devoted to the 2,400-year-old vessel uncovered off the coast of Kibbutz Maagan Mikhael, exhibits the hull of the ancient craft, an anchor, and some of its cargo. The Art Wing contains the Hecht Collection, showcasing French Impressionist paintings and works from the Jewish School of Paris.