Israeli University Probed for Accepting Lapid as Doctoral Student

Bar Ilan accepts the aspiring political leader to its flagship doctoral program though he doesn't hold a bachelor's degree.

The Israeli Council of Higher Learning announced Sunday that it had launched an investigation into Yair Lapid’s acceptance to a doctoral program at Bar Ilan University, following a report in Haaretz.

Lapid, the former host of Channel 2's "Ulpan Shishi," who recently announced he intends on entering politics, does not hold a bachelor’s degree but was accepted as a master's student on the basis of his "literary and journalistic achievements." Yet according to the program's requirements, "the course is intended for students who have completed their bachelor's degree with honors and who display a broad-minded perspective."

Yair Lapid - Glickman
Nimrod Glickman

Last June, Lapid was accepted as a doctorate student in the university's Program for the Study of Commentary and Culture, which is seen as one of the Ramat Gan institute's flagship projects.

The doctorate requirements state: "In order to be accepted [students are] required to complete two years of Master's studies in the course."

After completing these two years, "students interested in a doctorate will submit a doctorate proposal, following which they will become regular doctorate students."

Bar-Ilan University said in response: "Mr. Yair Lapid was accepted to [the program's] Master's studies in the accepted process for students with no degree after a comprehensive examination, considering his literary and journalistic accomplishments and the recommendations he submitted. In his Master's studies, Lapid had especially excellent grades and therefore the doctorate studies committee accepted his request to begin doctorate studies in a combined course, intended for outstanding students ... also in the university's accepted procedure."

The university said two other students, both authors, were also accepted to the program this year. Lapid chose not to comment.

Read this article in Hebrew