News & Stories

Women, Technology, Balance and Everything In Between


Panel Discussion Touches on Motivation, Family Support and Adapting to Rapid Change.



The event, organized on Zoom under the auspices of the Gender Equality Unit directed by Adv. Orna Kopolovich, updated participants on the role HIT was playing in effecting gender equality, while candidly discussing the challenges for women to achieve success.


In his greetings, HIT President Prof. Eduard Yakubov praised the significant contribution made by the women in academe and administration at HIT, and indicated that over the past five years, HIT has increased the number of female faculty members by 30%.


Prof. Adir Pridor, Chairman of the Executive Committee, spoke of the time hopefully in the near future when it was no longer necessary to set aside a special day to celebrate the achievements of women – because it will be a given.


HIT has made gender parity as a major priority. "In the current school year, the Gender Equality Unit has launched the ' Women’s Leadership Program" designed for outstanding students in the technological professions (STEM) during the first year of study. The program provides training and scholarships to outstanding applicants.”


In addition, the ‘Chosen’ program which helps women bridge between the academe and industry, has entered its fifth year. The leadership program aims at developing a generation of female leaders prepared for the dynamics of the hi-tech world. There, management tools and skills are developed, in order to maximize leadership capabilities and prepare women for optimal integration into industry. The program includes three elements: female leadership training, social entrepreneurship and soft skill management. As part of the program and under professional supervision, the students implement their skills by undertaking a hands-on social project.


Collaboration with the non-profit organization Alice Code is continuing, where emphasis is placed on encouraging elementary school girls to learn computer programming and ‘enter’ the world of computer science at an early age.


The Panelists: Yael Gibor, VP of R&D and Technology at EZbra Advanced Dressing Ltd. (and HIT Industrial Design alumni); Anat Zalma Goren, co-owner and CEO of ZAGO and co-chair of the Association of Industrial and Management Engineers at AEAI – The Association of Engineers, Architects and Graduates in Technological Sciences in Israel; Anat Yahav, Director of the Infrastructure Division in the Technology Sector of Bank Hapoalim.


Asked if they felt that being women was ever an obstacle to advancement, the three replied that they did not let anything distract them from their path and purpose, despite the fact that often they were the only women in the room, or that at times, their male counterparts found it difficult to accept their authority and seniority.


Responses varied when asked about what made their job special to them. Whether job satisfaction stemmed from ‘creating connections’, to ‘adapting to the constant changes of a technological world’, or to ‘being an instrument of real and meaningful change’, our panelists all agreed that the key to success and self-fulfillment, other than willpower and ambition, is also the presence of enabling partners and egalitarian spouses. Accepting that it’s OK not to be perfect on the home-front, at work and with their children is an important factor in their success and wellbeing.


All the panelists concluded that the advancement of women first and foremost relies on their personal success and ability to keep their eye on the prize. They urged women not to be afraid to change direction and step out of their comfort zone on the way to doing the thing they love most.


A lecture by Yael Man Shahar entitled “Why Zebras Don’t Have Ulcers” was the concluding act of the event, providing the science and humor behind stress management in the 21st century.



Posted: 15/03/2021