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Four years after being badly injured in a terrorist attack, Shira Yered-Sebbag addresses fellow graduates at an emotional ceremony.


Four and a half years have passed since we first met. For each one of us, these years were filled with serious and intense studies, and many personal experiences that made us wiser and stronger, and sometimes even challenged us. I would like to share one of my experiences.

At the beginning of the first year, I was severely injured in a terrorist attack in Givat Asaf. Throughout the process of healing, we witnessed great miracles. The recovery process required hospitalization for several weeks, followed by several months of rehabilitation. During the medical tests that I underwent because of my injury, a growth was discovered in my brain that required removal. Thank G-d, after recovering from the injury, I successfully underwent surgery to remove the growth. Throughout this whole period, I felt G-d watching over me.

The attack occurred on a Thursday, and the next day, Dr. Lori Glick (senior lecturer in the nursing program) stood in my hospital room and said she was here for anything I needed. And that's exactly how it was. Assistance was provided by JCT’s academic staff as well as by administrative staff and management all the way through. For every need that arose - I felt that there was concern, a listening ear, and an attempt to help as much as possible and always with joy and a smiling face.

Generally, in higher education, you don't expect the staff to be so caring and sensitive, but here at Machon Tal, any student who needed it, found people who would listen to her and try to help her as much as they could. I want to thank you, on behalf of all of us, for listening, for assistance, for accommodation and creative problem solving, each according to their needs. It is not always possible to find a solution that satisfies everyone, but everyone felt empathy and care.

After the terrorist attack, I discovered the dedication of my classmates with whom I had not yet become fully acquainted at this early stage of the academic year. On the first Shabbat after the attack, when I was still fuzzy on the painkillers, girls already came to visit me in the hospital. They expressed their concern, readiness to help, and prayed for my healing.

Throughout that first year that I was absent from school, these dear friends recorded and filmed all the lectures (and this was still in the pre-Covid/pre-Zoom era...) and visited to help review the material learnt. One of the things that was important to me after the attack was to keep up with my studies despite the injury. Throughout the year, I felt I could ask for help from any of you, and now, with much thanks to you, I stand here today with you all, at this graduation ceremony.

About a year and a half after the attack, I got married to Shlomo, and thank G-d, we have a sweet child, Yedidya, who is a year and a half. I am now working as a community nurse in Mitzpe Ramon.

From my own personal experience, I understand the importance of being sensitive towards patients and their needs and maintaining their dignity as much as possible during treatment. The studies at JCT gave me extensive professional knowledge, as well as a holistic view of the patient, so as to provide a response to their various needs. Of course, there is always more to learn, grow and improve, and I try all the time to do better than yesterday.

Let us pray that each one of us will be blessed to aid those in need of healing and that we shall not err and cause harm, Amen. 

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