HOW to stand out in a crowded field?
It’s an issue that Yoash Dvir has tackled since his recent appointment as CEO of Technion Australia, the local organization that supports the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology.
Although the Haifa-based university has consistently made it to the world’s top 100 lists and has three Nobel Prize-winning discoveries by its researchers, Dvir knows pitching to donors can be a challenge.
As a not-for-profit organization, Technion Australia is “not alone in the fundraising business, and each person has their variety of preferences on what and where to invest,” he said.
Dvir, who has experience as a lawyer, entrepreneur and business development consultant, said, “We need to show the investor what’s in it for them.
“When you donate to the Technion, you are investing…in the future of the whole world.”
The Technion projects cited by Dvir include physics experiments to be performed by an Israeli astronaut aboard the ISS; research on ending world hunger; and the technology that has enabled remote surgery in rural Australia, where medical services can be scarce.
Dvir said the operation took place “with no people, just robots…and a surgeon…here in Sydney”.
Other projects include eliminating “forever chemical” PFAS from drinking water; stop the side effects of chemotherapy that cause metastases; and correct for the effects of the under-representation of women in clinical trial data.
Speaking for himself, Dvir was humble.
“I think most people at Technion are much smarter than me. I couldn’t be accepted,” he said.
Beyond securing direct support, Dvir aims to increase the Technion’s academic presence in Australia by expanding its research collaborations with leading local universities, and is in “talks” with several of them.
It also aims to make Technion Australia a welcoming society, especially for its 400 graduates living in Australia.
He hopes to kick off his social calendar with alumni rallies — online if need be — and a Pi Day celebration next month, pandemic conditions permitting.
Overall, Dvir remains focused on the long term.
“You might not see the results today, but you’re investing money in something that will probably change the world. You can say, ‘You know what? I’m contributing to this’…and your kids and your grandchildren will benefit,” he said.
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