The Colton Fellowship Fund: A Tradition of Continuity and Engagement

“The Colton scholarships recognize the potential of students to discover, develop and contribute to our fields of study,” says scholarship recipient Natallie Tamam
05 June 2014
From left: TAU President Joseph Klafter, Judy and Steward Colton, Shoshana Noy, Director of Foundations & Grants at the TAU Academic Secretariat, and TAU VP for Resource Development, Amos Elad.

Following a long tradition, TAU supporters and Governors Judy and Stewart Colton arrived on campus for the annual gathering of the Colton Fellowship Fund. The Coltons came to meet with current and past recipients of the fund that they established in 1988 and that continues to nurture some of TAU’s most outstanding students and young faculty toward exemplary careers in public service, academia, industry and other fields.


Speaking at the ceremony, TAU President Joseph Klafter noted that the Coltons are strong believers in the State of Israel and in the potential for excellence at Tel Aviv University. “They created this Fund to cultivate the next generation of academic leadership and by any measure the program’s success is striking.”


To date, there have been 59 Colton Fellows, 16 of whom are currently post-doctoral fellows and faculty members of Tel Aviv University. This year there are seven Colton recipients: five doctoral students, a master’s student in music and one young member of faculty. “They are producing internationally recognized work in fields as diverse as medicine, politics, history, music, security and the law,” said Prof. Klafter.


Among distinguished Colton Fund alumni are Prof. Daphna Barak-Erez, former Dean of Law and a now a Supreme Court Justice; Prof. Eyal Zisser, Dean of the Lester and Sally Entin Faculty of Humanities; and Prof. Moshe Zuckerman of the Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas and a former director of the TAU Minerva Institute for German History.


From left: Special student scholarship recipient Natallie Tamam, PhD in mathematics, with TAU's Shoshanah Noy. 


“The Colton Fellowships support young and emerging scholars at the most crucial points of their careers,” said Justice Barak-Erez. “Judy and Stewart put their trust in me 25 years ago when I was starting my PhD studies. They not only supported me financially but they committed themselves to being full partners in my career. They follow each one of the recipients, frequently offering advice and moral support. I could not imagine my academic career without them,” she said.


This year, the Coltons decided to award a special student scholarship in honor of Ms. Shoshana Noy, Director of Foundations and Grants at the TAU Academic Secretariat, upon her retirement from the University. The scholarship was awarded to Ms. Natallie Tamam, a PhD student in mathematics whose mother is a member of the administrative staff of the University.


Paying tribute to Ms. Noy, who has coordinated the fund since its inception, Judy Colton said, “We’ve known Shoshy for 25 years and it has been a pleasure to work with her. I consider her as a kind of sister.” Speaking to the gathering, she added, “One of the great joys we have is to see so many of the recipients going on to do great work. This is what we believe in.” Stewart added that giving to the fund and getting to know the recipients had been a privilege.


Musical interludes were performed by members of the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music, past and current Colton Fellows.    


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