My name is Ilan and I am a student in the biomedical engineering faculty at the Technion.
When I emigrated from France four years ago, the name of the Technion was already familiar to me. Yet, I had no idea that I would find here in Israel such a world-class institute. Not only have I achieved the dream of living in Israel, but I have found a university with engineering training that outperforms what I could have received in even the finest French Schools of Engineering.
I have been proudly studying in this faculty for two years. A few weeks ago this pride led me to take part in the ATS Phonathon. The phonathon is a campaign of the ATS that allows students to contact donors in America, to show them their gratitude. We could finally speak to those very men and women who make all of our achievements possible.
During the same period was the visit of President Obama to our country. At this occasion, the US president decided to give his main speech in front of students. At the Technion, the student association decided to choose the delegation students on a merit basis. Because of my participation in the phonathon campaign I had the pleasure of being chosen, along with about a hundred other students. I had heard a lot about the big part the Technion took during this visit, especially the engraved nano-chip with the replicas of the USA and Israeli Declarations of Independence that was offered to president Obama as the official gift of the State of Israel. I also knew that the Israeli Prime Minister himself presented President Obama with a demonstration of the now famous technological ingenuity and creativity of Technion graduates — the snake robot of Professor Alon Wolf, the ReWalk system of Dr. Amit Goffer and the waiter robot developed by Haifa Middle School pupils supervised by professor Igor Verner. In this context wearing a shirt with the Technion logo was even more gratifying than usual.
During his speech the President talked about the fact that only in Israel could we see, in the same morning, the Dead Sea Scrolls and all those robots and technological successes. It is true that only in Israel we can find this connection between the past and the future and it is a great honor that although the past was pictured by the Qumran manuscripts, the future was represented mainly by the Technion achievements.
Once again our university has shown its ability to compete with the best and to impress the President of the United States himself, as he told us in his speech how amazing our technology was. All of this is very inspiring for us students. It is a great achievement that I think should as well be of pride to all those people we met during the phonathon. Indeed, once again, this is for them a rewarding demonstration of what is achieved here every day, thanks to them and their great generosity.