100 Alumni We Love

Reflections on My Time at the Hebrew University

By Dan Strumpf, Toronto

As my parents were engaged in science and research, it was almost a given I’d follow their path. Although I grew up in the suburbs of Tel Aviv, our house was always full of pets. I was always interested in animals and wanted to learn about them and care for them. Thus, I wanted to pursue veterinary studies.

It was an obvious choice for me to study Animal Sciences at the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Agriculture because it was a unique program only offered there. In addition, in that year, 1985, the program still offered the option of doing the first year of basic science studies in Jerusalem rather than in Rehovot. It was a great opportunity to live and study in Jerusalem (my favourite city in the whole world!) and then move to Rehovot for subsequent years where the strong scent of the citrus blossom would wake me up in the spring. As such, it allowed me to pursue studies in the field I was passionate about and in the places I enjoyed living in.

Studying at Hebrew University had a significant impact on my life. It provided me the foundations and instilled in me the joy of studying by having engaging professors and inspiring mentors in an open-minded learning environment. In addition, my studies at the Hebrew U always kept me curious about the world around me, and to be open to advancements in science. I then made a choice to not pursue veterinary studies and rather pursue a graduate degree and a career in research; I contributed to our understanding of animal and human genetics and embryonic development, to development of better tools for cancer prognosis and treatment, and am working with my colleagues to improve cancer healthcare systems.

  • Dan is currently a team lead with the Cancer Screening Analytics group, Prevention and Cancer Control, at Ontario Health (Cancer Care Ontario) in Toronto

Dan Strumpf