(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a short while ago today (Wednesday), 5 October 2011, called Technion Professor Dan Shechtman, who has been awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his research on quasicrystals: "I would like to congratulate you, on behalf of the citizens of Israel, for your award, which expresses the intellect of our people. Every Israeli is happy today and every Jew in the world is proud. I also congratulated your institution, the Technion, on the centenary of its founding," the Prime Minister said.
Prime Minister Netanyahu invited Prof. Shechtman to meet with him before the award ceremony.
PM Netanyahu meets with Nobel Laureate Prof. Dan Shechtman
(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met today (Thursday), 6 October 2011, in his office, with the winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Prof. Dan Shechtman.
Prime Minister Netanyahu asked Prof. Shechtman to teach him about the research that won him the prestigious prize. The latter took a marker and did so on a whiteboard. Technion President Peretz Lavie, Education Minister Gideon Saar and Science and Technology Minister Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkovitz - a former dean of the mathematics faculty at the Technion, and who officiated at the wedding of one of Prof. Shechtman's children - were also present.
Prime Minister Netanyahu told Prof. Shechtman that he promises that many other Israelis will yet win Nobel Prizes in the various fields thanks to the Government's investments in education. The Prime Minister noted that in the framework of the bi-annual budget, the Government approved an additional NIS 7.5 billion for higher education. At the initiative of the Prime Minister, and in cooperation with Education Minister Saar and Science and technology Minister Hershkovitz, four centers of excellence have been opened, at various universities, in order to aid in the return of ex-pat scientists. Another six such centers are expected to open.
Prime Minister Netanyahu also referred to the results of recent national exams in which primary school students scored their highest marks in science.
Prime Minister Netanyahu noted that the Government has approved a year's free tuition for discharged soldiers who study in the periphery, and added that a new medical school will open later this month in Safed.
Professor Shechtman gave Prime Minister Netanyahu a necktie emblazoned with the structure of quasi-crystals, which the Technion had made last year on the former's birthday in anticipation of the Nobel Prize.
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President Peres congratulates Nobel Prize winner Prof. Shectman
(Communicated by the Media Adviser to President Peres)
"You have given the State of Israel a wonderful gift. You provide hope and serve as an example to the younger generation."
President Shimon Peres called Prof. Dan Shectman of the Technion earlier today to congratulate him on winning the Nobel Prize for Chemistry. The President said to him: "Your win is promising and gives hope. There are not many nations who have won so many Nobel Prizes. You have given the State of Israel a wonderful gift. This is a big day for Haifa, a big day for the Technion and for the State of Israel. The State of Israel needs your Nobel Prize, you are the tenth person to achieve this."
The President emphasized: "You are the crown jewel. You provide hope and serve as an example to the younger generation. You demonstrate that a thinking person who is hardworking and brave can make groundbreaking scientific discoveries. On behalf of the State of Israel I would like to salute you and tell you how proud we are of you and what a wonderful gift you have give the State of Israel."
President Peres also stressed that three of the ten Israeli Nobel Prize winners are graduates of the Technion, and that this is a badge of honor for the Technion and for higher education in Israel.
An excited Prof. Shectman responded to the President by saying: "Mr. Peres thank you so much. I very much appreciate your work on behalf of the State of Israel in the past, present and future, and I wish you well."