West Bank settlement university to double in size

Ariel University is to double in size within the next five years, according to a plan now being promoted by Education Minister Naftali Bennett. Ten or 12 new buildings are to be added for new faculties in research and teaching at the university, located in the West Bank settlement of Ariel, in occupied Palestinian territory, as well as a new medical school, to be named after US billionaire businessman Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam, write Lior Dattel and Ronny Linder-Ganz for Haaretz.

The subcommittee on funding of the Council for Higher Education in Israel recently approved the plan, which will also lead to a major increase in the student body from its current figure of 11,000. The funding subcommittee estimated the cost of the expansion at about ILS400 million (US$113 million). Funding is to come from the university’s state-funded budget, from its income from tuition and from donations.

In recent years the state increased funding to Ariel University after its controversial upgrade from a college in 2012. This year, the university’s budget is about ILS260 million. The university informed the Council for Higher Education subcommittee on funding that it will not require additional state funding for the new construction. Most of the construction, it says, will be funded by surpluses from state money it received after being upgraded from a college to a university as well as from tuition payments and fundraising.
Full report on the Haaretz site