NJCU’s Guarini Institute Brings International Audience to Jersey City with “Innovation and Security in Port Management in Israel and New Jersey” Forum

June 13, 2022
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JERSEY CITY, N.J. | The New Jersey City University (NJCU) Guarini Institute for International Education and Economic Mobility brought an international audience to Jersey City and the School of Business on June 8 when it hosted a forum entitled “Innovation and Security in Port Management in Israel and New Jersey”.

The event, spearheaded by NJCU’s Guarini Institute, was part of a three-day delegation between partners in Israel and the State of New Jersey held from June 7-8. The return trip builds upon an economic mission trip to Israel in November 2021 mobilized by Choose New Jersey and the New Jersey-Israel Commission. As a result of that mission, NJCU and the Port of Ashdod signed a letter of intent (LOI) that will help strengthen the economic relationship between the State of New Jersey and Israel, as well as between the Port of Ashdod and the NJCU community.

Participants in the forum on June 8 included representatives from the business ecosystem in New Jersey interested in port management, cybersecurity, logistics and supply chain including members of chamber of commerce, incubators/accelerators, as well as faculty conducting relevant research.

United States Senator Bob Menendez, the State of New Jersey’s senior senator — who received an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humane Letters during NJCU’s 2022 Commencement ceremonies on June 2 — offered video remarks to the attendees.

“The New Jersey-Israel Commission has been incredibly proud to partner with our friends at New Jersey City University and the Port of Ashdod and to think creatively about how we can connect our maritime ecosystems to meet today’s global logistics challenges,” said Andrew H Gross, Executive Director of the New Jersey-Israel Commission. “While Ashdod and New Jersey are already connected as ports of call, the journey ahead of us will be to deepen this cooperation as we innovate for the future and create exciting opportunities here at home.”

Sue Henderson, President of NJCU said: “I am delighted that this forum and the synchronous economic events that surrounded this delegation visit continue to further innovation between our Guarini Institute and the NJCU School of Business, with our partners both internationally in Israel and the State of New Jersey. As we continue to evolve our successful global initiative projects, events like this openly showcase the great collaboration that can exist between higher education, government and businesses.”

“The Guarini Institute at NJCU eagerly hosted the first-ever delegation led by Israel’s Port of Ashdod to New Jersey as we seek to facilitate business partnerships between the delegates and the state’s business ecosystem,” said Dr. Adrian Franco, Executive Director of NJCU’s Guarini Institute for International Education and Economic Mobility. “This visit strengthens the partnership between the Port of Ashdod and NJCU and creates opportunities for economic development and educational initiatives related to innovation and security in port management and logistics.”

The purpose of the visit was to facilitate business partnerships between the delegates and the business ecosystem in New Jersey, and in particular with firms and agencies engaged in the management of local ports. The program convened a diverse group of leaders from the private, public, and academic sectors, including stakeholders in New Jersey focused on port management, security, and innovation.

“New Jersey is home to the largest seaport on the East Coast and several world-class academic institutions, while Israel is globally recognized for its cutting-edge technology and its top-notch security sector expertise,” said Erica Brieterman, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA)’s Sector Lead for Transportation and Logistics. “Bringing industry leaders together from the Startup Nation and the State of Innovation in this forum was a productive way to learn from one another and to begin collaborating as we strengthen our ports and our economies. I look forward to continuing conversations with my Israeli counterparts.”

In addition to remarks from Senator Menendez, speakers at the event included Richard Sun, Senior Policy Advisor on Transportation to Governor of New Jersey; Brieterman; Eugene Shvartsman, Vice President and Head of Government Affairs, Cross River;  Sue Henderson, President of NJCU; Amit Mokashi, Associate Professor, NJCU School of Business; Bernard McSherry, Founding Dean of NJCU School of Business; and Franco.

NJCU’s partners in the forum included Choose New Jersey, New Jersey-Israel Commission, New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Sponsors included Cross River Bank and TechUnited.

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Members of the delegation at the Port of Newark on June 7.

On day one of the economic visit on Tuesday, June 7, there were private roundtable meetings between NJCU, the New Jersey-Israel Commission, Choose Jersey and stakeholders from Port Newark.

As an outcome of the LOI, NJCU and the Port of Ashdod continue to explore opportunities to collaborate on projects that will advance innovation, economic development and international education. Furthermore, the Port of Ashdod will draw upon NJCU’s expertise in Supply Chain, Logistics and Maritime Port Management.

Additionally, NJCU and the Port of Ashdod will encourage collaboration between the Port of Ashdod and port-related businesses in the New York-New Jersey metro area. NJCU will also work with the Port of Ashdod and utilize academic resources to develop educational and workforce development opportunities for NJCU students and the broader NJCU community.

To further advance the commitments outlined in the agreement between the Port of Ashdod and NJCU, the Israeli delegation was composed of senior level representatives of the Port of Ashdod, experts in port security, and executives of six startup companies and their guests. These representatives included  Roy Avrahami, Chief Innovation Officer, Ashdod Port Company. and Tamir Goren, Director of Strategic Program, Technology Unit, Israel National Cyber Directorate,.

Startup firms attending and represented included Spinframe: Ori Yakov Dangur, CEO & Tomer Shwarzberg, VP of Sales; Enwize: Hagai Friedman, CEO & Niv Zitelny, COO; Storage Drop: Shay Cohen, CEO; Cyber 2.0: Sneer Rozenfeld, CEO & Erez Kaplan-Haelion, CTO; DockTech: Uri Yoselevich, CEO; and Salvador Technologies: Alexander Yevtushenko, CEO & Oleg Vusiker, CTO.

About NJCU:
New Jersey City University is an institution of higher learning with an audacious goal: the development of our students, our city, our communities, our state, and the world beyond. We are a game-changing force for our students and their families. Whether our students are enrolled in one of our 50 undergraduate, 30 graduate or three doctoral programs at our three locations — our main campus in Jersey City, our School of Business located in the heart of the Jersey City Financial District, or our newest location at NJCU @ Fort Monmouth which expands bachelor's and master's degree offerings along the Jersey Shore, NJCU provides an affordable, diverse environment, and an exceptionally supportive faculty—all of which prepares them to be critical thinkers in a global landscape.

We’re also changing the game for our city, our communities, and our state. As the educational anchor institution in Jersey City, we’ve established partnerships to ensure the area’s growth directly benefits our students and community members. We seek to improve the lives of everyone in the Garden State, whether creating a home for the arts, bringing educational programs to K-12 students, offering bachelor’s degrees in partnership with community colleges, or providing professional development opportunities for adults.

At NJCU, we’re not just educating minds, we’re nourishing souls and lifting communities. We’re changing the game.


Ira Thor
, Senior Director of University Communications and Media Relations | ithor@njcu.edu | 201-200-3301