Nostalgia Sunday – BGU Looks Back

January 6, 2013 - 10:00 AM by

Aerial view of campus - circa 1975Ben-Gurion University of the Negev was established in 1969 with the aim of promoting the development of the Negev. Today, BGU is a major center for teaching and research with close to 20,000 students, five faculties with 51 academic departments and units, six schools of which five are in health-related fields, and eight research institutes. It’s convivial academic atmosphere, active campus life and pioneering “making-the-desert-bloom” spirit has also made it Israel’s most popular school for undergraduate studies.

A new exhibition, “From the Past to the Future” opened last week at the George Shrut Visitors Center Gallery at Ben-Gurion University (BGU). The exhibit, prepared by the BGU’s Department of Publications and Media Relations, is the culmination of a project to build a digital database that will be an authoritative source of the University’s history.

Old photographs and negatives of images taken before the digital age that had been stored in the University’s warehouses were scanned and transferred to digital format. They are now available in an online archive that that serves the whole University, presenting its history from the groundbreaking ceremony…


The dusty hills where a modern campus now stands…


To photographs of historical events and visits of dignitaries and high-ranking officials such as Defense Minister Gen. Moshe Dayan…

Moshe Dayan

And celebrity supporters from around the world, such as movie star Elizabeth Taylor.

Elizabeth Taylor

There are also images of campus life as it was in years gone by. The library with its hard-copy index system — where are those index cards and file cabinets now?

student in library - 1980's

A rare desert snowfall in the year 2000…

For the first time in decades, in January 2000, snow fell in Be'er Sheva.

To give you an idea of how far BGU has come, here’s a present-day shot of the Ilse Katz Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology.

BGU Ilse Katz Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology

Information for some of the photographs is incomplete. If you have photos or details to share, contact BGU’s Department of Publications and Media.


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