Sir Frank Lowy Donates $18 Million to Tel Aviv University’s International School

Gift from Israeli-Australian businessman will expand TAU’s offering of global programs and collaborations

 Prof. Ariel Porat, President of Tel Aviv University (left) with Sir Frank Lowy (photo credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)
Prof. Ariel Porat, President of Tel Aviv University (left) with Sir Frank Lowy
(photo credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)

Sir Frank Lowy is donating $18 million (NIS 65 million) to Tel Aviv University (TAU) to expand the activities of its International School, which will be renamed the Lowy International School Dedicated to the Memory of Shirley Lowy.

The name change of TAU’s International School will take place on Tuesday, December 20, 2022. The donation will fund the construction of a building that will serve as the new home of the International School, as well as the launch of three key activities at the school – the Lowy Scholarship Fund supporting outstanding international students at stages of their academic studies, including research students, the Lowy Distinguished Guest Professors Fund, financing visits of leading scholars from abroad, and the development of new international and local programs and initiatives.

Lowy’s gift will also enable TAU to expand, enrich and diversify the school’s student body as well as its study programs. TAU currently offers more than 20 English-language academic programs, including a joint Liberal Arts bachelor’s degree with Columbia University, a new International BA in Management and Liberal Arts, and an online MBA program – the first of its kind in Israel.

Tel Aviv University’s International School (Credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)Tel Aviv University’s International School (Credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)

Over 2,000 students from more than 100 countries come to TAU every year, and there are more than 30,000 international student alumni worldwide. The school has recently experienced significant growth and now serves as the hub for all international activities on campus, including study programs, research partnerships, student exchanges, visits of scholars from abroad, and conferences.

The Lowy International School is central to TAU’s international strategy, aiming for several goals:  enhancing international collaboration through research ties with leading institutions, attracting students from across the globe and providing Israeli students with the tools they need to prosper in today’s globalized era. To date, the network of partners developed by TAU comprises over 280 institutions in 46 countries, including universities in the Gulf states and Morocco, Ivy League universities in the USA, and leading academic institutions in Europe and Asia.

Sir Frank Lowy said, “I have always been a Zionist, and now I am excited for this extension of my warm friendship with Tel Aviv University - intended to bolster TAU and Israel’s relations with leading partners in academia and industry around the world. With this gift, I hope to enhance the important connection between the State of Israel and Diaspora Jewry, and to encourage academic excellence by bringing the best researchers and students from all over the world to Israel. My family and I know that my dear wife Shirley’s memory will forever live on at TAU, and this makes us very proud. Shirley believed in education, and in her 40s fulfilled a childhood dream and completed an academic degree. This tribute to my wife combines all the things that were most important to her - education, the state of Israel, and empowering the new generations. The gift in her memory will benefit students and scholars in many ways, and for years to come. I know that Shirley would be happy and honored to see that her legacy is commemorated in this way.”

Prof. Ariel Porat, President of Tel Aviv University, added, “Sir Frank Lowy’s leadership and philanthropic activity have for decades generated significant changes in communities in Israel, Australia, and worldwide. This new gift will further enhance his impact, strengthen the ties between Israel and the world, and extend the reach of Israeli academia. It is a great privilege for us at Tel Aviv University to regard Sir Frank as a close and steadfast friend. The fact that he has seen fit to entrust us with the legacy of his beloved wife Shirley is a great honor for us.”

TAU Vice President International Prof. Milette Shamir: “We are immensely grateful for Sir Frank Lowy’s gift. It is a great honor for us to house the Lowy International School dedicated to the memory of Shirley Lowy. This generous donation will allow us to bolster the university’s international standing significantly, attract hundreds of excellent international researchers and students, and strengthen TAU’s ties with communities around the world. This gift brings about an enormous transformation when it comes to TAU’s global impact.”

A ceremony celebrating the gift will take place in December in the presence of Sir Frank and his family.