Richter’s NIR School of the Heart Has Proven Building Bridges Between Middle Eastern Communities is Possible Through Experiential Study of the Heart
OCTOBER 17, 2019, WASHINGTON, DC – Known for her successful medical device company, Medinol, Dr. Judith Richter is now being honored for her groundbreaking work to engage young people in the Middle East in the study of the heart.
During an event in her honor in Washington, Dr. Richter was recognized Wednesday, "in recognition of her vision of educating ambassadors of universal health and peace, while building bridges between diverse communities."
The event featured a rare joint discussion by former U.S. Presidents William J. Clinton and George W. Bush, who discussed the challenge of bridging divides in conflict regions.
The presidential forum and recognition by the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science at MIT, were highlights of an event celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the NIR School of the Heart, an innovative educational program, founded and led by Richter, that brings together Israelis, Jordanians and Palestinians to study the heart in a collaborative environment.
Professor Elazer Edelman, Director of MIT's Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, said of Richter, “Through her actions and drive for peace and understanding, Judith Richter has brought communities, and countries together. Our Institute will forever celebrate her amazing efforts at unifying the world.”
The NIR School’s innovative model serves to break down cultural barriers to understanding through a collaborative academic and social learning experience. Of the 800 students who have graduated the program, 25% have entered the medical fields, most of them as physicians.
“These young people from different backgrounds have learned about the heart by opening their hearts to each other,” said Richter, who founded Medinol in 1993. “If we can bring young people together to learn in the Middle East, we can do it anywhere.”
“I am grateful to be recognized and humbled by the presence of so many distinguished leaders. Even at times of increased tension in the region, we have made the NIR School of the Heart a place of discovery. These young people have consistently discovered the truth, that our differences make us stronger and help us innovate and improve the human condition,” said Richter.
Richter hopes the NIR School of the Heart educational model will be adopted in other conflict regions and places where tensions between diverse communities form a barrier to peace. She also believes that this immersive learning model can benefit corporations and industries in an increasingly diverse and connected global market.
ABOUT NIR SCHOOL OF THE HEART
The NIR School of the Heart was founded in 1998 by Dr. Judith Richter. The NIR School brings together Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian teenagers to study the heart while building bridges between them. Nearly twenty-five percent of the school’s 800 graduates have entered the medical fields and the school has inspired graduates to be ambassadors of health and peace in their home communities.