Monday, June 02, 2008

Hebrew University's PhD Award Ceremony

My wife, Rachel, formally received her PhD yesterday from Hebrew University. The ceremony took place in their outdoor amphitheater overlooking the hills of Judea.

Here she is, sitting in the back row wearing a cap they gave out to shield her eyes from the sun.

There were around 300 other PhDs, as well as several honorary PhDs and some other award recipients. The entire affair was rather dull.

Among the more interesting moments:

Former Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives Tom Lantos was awarded an honorary PhD. He was a Holocaust survivor and a friend of Israel's. Tom passed away in February, and his wife Annette accepted the posthumous honors on his behalf.

Bernard-Henri Lévy, a well known French socialite and "new philosopher", accepted an honorary PhD. He gave an impassioned speech about his love for Israel and education in general.

Shuly Nathan, who electrified Israel in 1967 by singing Naomi Shemer's Jerusalem of Gold, sang that song and Hatikva. She wasn't at the top of her game, but it was still a thrill to see her live for the first time.

And here's Rachel walking down to receive her PhD.

Congrats, Rach!