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The University of Haifa (Hebrew: אוניברסיטת חיפה, Arabic: جامعة حيفا) is a public research university in Haifa, Israel.
The University of Haifa was founded in 1963 by Haifa mayor Abba Hushi, to operate under the academic auspices of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Haifa university is located on Mount Carmel. In 1972 University of Haifa declared its independence and became the sixth academic institution in Israel and the fourth university.
About 18,100 undergraduate and graduate students study in the university a wide variety of topics, specializing in social sciences, humanities, law and education. The University is broadly divided into six Faculties: Humanities, Social Sciences, Law, Science and Science Education, Social Welfare and Health Studies, and Education. There is also the Graduate School of Management, The Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences and the Continuing Education and Extension Studies.
Beyond the objective of a first-rate higher education, the University of Haifa aims to provide equal educational opportunities to all sectors of the society, and in particular to encourage mutual understanding and cooperation between the Jewish and Arab populations on and off campus. The university is a home for students from all the edges of the Israeli society - Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, religious and secular students and also many students from all over the world who study in the international school.
The University of Haifa is home to the Hecht Museum of archeology and art, several research centers and institutes, including the Evolution Institute, Center for the Study of the Information Society, Center for the Study of National Security, Tourism Research Center, and more. The University also hosts a large IBM research center on its campus.
In its first year 472 students attended the University. Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences were offered in the following departments: Biblical Studies, Hebrew Literature and Language, Jewish History, General History, French Literature and Language, English Literature and Language, Arabic Literature and Language, Geography, Sociology, and Political Science. The academic staff included 180 instructors, 50 of them Haifa residents.
In 1967, the University of Haifa awarded a diploma to its first graduates, 75 in number, three-quarters of whom intended to be teachers.
The first home of the University of Haifa was in Erdstein House in the Hadar HaCarmel section of Haifa, but it soon became too crowded. The University moved to Merkaz HaCarmel, and was housed in the building that now serves the Municipal High School No. 5. In 1966, the University moved to the top of Mount Carmel, the present location of its main campus.
The University's first building, the "Multi-Purpose Building", was constructed in 1966. It contained classrooms, halls, laboratories, a library with 110,000 books, and a cafeteria. Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer planned the campus to include all the University's facilities in one complex. More recently, additional buildings have been built nearby. Niemeyer did not complete the detailed design phase, instead Shlomo Gilad received the commission for the overall planning of the campus. Gilad retreated from Niemeyer's design, but retained the character of the main building, Eshkol building, named for the ex-prime minister Levi Eshkol. The Eshkol Building stayed as the highest building in the city of Haifa until 2002.