#EmpoweredLearning Participants Tackle Passover Question Presented by Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

This week, in preparation for the holiday of Passover, an online program organized by Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future is bringing an interactive Torah-learning experience to thousands of users within the YU community and beyond.

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YU Basketball Tournament Culminates in Thrilling Triple Overtime Championship Game

Five days of exciting competition at Yeshiva University’s 24th Annual Red Sarachek Basketball Tournament culminated with a dramatic 75-73 triple overtime victory by the Frisch Cougars (Paramus, New Jersey) over the HAFTR Hawks (Lawrence, New York) in the Tier-1 Championship game. Before a crowd of more than 1,200 fans, Frisch center Benni Tuchman sealed the win for the Cougars after hitting a game-winning layup with just under three seconds left to play.

More than 20 yeshiva high school teams from across North America took part in the annual tournament—named for the legendary Bernard “Red” Sarachek, YU’s former longtime men’s basketball coach—from March 19-23.

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Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and Senator Joseph Lieberman Discuss the Haggada’s Politics at Center for the Jewish Future Event

Hundreds of people gathered at Yeshiva University’s Wilf Campus on Sunday, March 22, to hear a pre-Passover conversation with former Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks and former U.S. Senator Joseph Lieberman on “The Haggada’s Politics: From 2,000 Years Ago to Today.” Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik, director of YU’s Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought, moderated the discussion.

In his introductory remarks, Rabbi Soloveichik highlighted the nature of the Haggada as a work of political Jewish thought. He also pointed out the Haggada’s deep attraction for America’s Founding Fathers.

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Dean Karen Bacon to Lead Combined YC and Stern Faculty While Schools Remain Separate

Yeshiva University recently announced that it will unify the undergraduate faculties at Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women as part of its effort to improve student education and create efficiencies. The campuses and classes remain separate, while the faculty combines its resources. Dr. Karen Bacon will serve as the inaugural Dr. Monique C. Katz Dean of the Undergraduate Faculty of Arts and Science at YU.

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Dr. Karen Bacon will lead a unified Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women faculty.

“The faculty, individually and collectively, are the lifeblood of this critical institution and we will now advance to right-size the administrative parts of the university,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “For several years, we have been discussing the need for a more unified undergraduate faculty of arts and science. Dean Bacon is a valued educator of integrity and has served with distinction in the highest levels of academic leadership—I look to her and all our faculty to continue to exercise their prerogative in shaping what is a fine curriculum still further.”

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In New Book, YU Historian Imagines American Judaism If the Holocaust Never Happened

On March 30, Dr. Jeffrey Gurock, the Libby M. Klaperman Professor of Jewish History at Yeshiva University, will launch his new book, The Holocaust Averted: An Alternate History of American Jewry 1938-1967 (Rutgers University Press) at the Yeshiva University Museum in a nationally-televised event sponsored by the Museum, the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies and the American Jewish Historical Society.

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In his new book, YU historian Dr. Jeffrey Gurock imagines American Jewish history if the Holocaust had never happened.

In the book, Gurock imagines what might have happened to the Jewish community in the United States if the Holocaust had not occurred and forces readers to contemplate how the road to acceptance and empowerment for today’s American Jews could have been harder than it actually was. YU News sat down with Gurock to discuss some of the most intriguing moments in that period of history, both real and imagined, and their impact on the American Judaism of today.

What inspired you to write this book and how does it fit into the emerging academic field of counterfactual history?

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Institute Offers Opportunities for Study in International Human Rights, Humanitarian, Refugee and Criminal Law

Yeshiva University’s Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law will launch the Cardozo Law Institute in Holocaust and Human Rights (CLIHHR, pronounced “clear”). CLIHHR is a leading global center dedicated to strengthening laws, norms and institutions to prevent mass atrocities and promote human security. Consistent with Cardozo Law’s reputation for its distinguished faculty and innovative programs, CLIHHR offers invaluable opportunities to students in international human rights, humanitarian, refugee and criminal law while contributing to scholarship, policy and advocacy in the field.

The Institute began as the Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights Program in 2005 with unclaimed funds from a Holocaust claims litigation settlement. The program then became the locus for high-level discussion on Holocaust remembrance and atrocity prevention. Today, the program has expanded into an institute to meet the ever-evolving challenges in mass atrocity prevention and response.

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You might be aware that a majority of the undergraduate faculty of Yeshiva College who participated in a vote passed a resolution of No Confidence in President Richard Joel. This is an unfortunate development, given the Administration’s work and many meetings with the faculty to develop plans to enhance the quality of the educational experience at YU while saving costs. While it’s regrettable that a small number of contract faculty will leave the University, we are building an organization and an academic program that creates more flexibility and options for students. Details will be shared soon on ways more of our students can enjoy and benefit from our outstanding scholars, and how smaller programs can be strengthened.

Sometimes change can create concern. But the fact is that change needs to be embraced, and change provides an opportunity to make improvements in our structure, and in the way we support the needs and aspirations of our exceptional students. Change will allow YU to move forward with excellence.

Below is a statement I am sharing on behalf of the Board of Trustees.

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Emphasis on Ethical Leadership and Innovative Course Structure Give Sy Syms’ Accounting Masters Global Appeal

At Yeshiva University’s Sy Syms School of Business, a thriving master’s in accounting program is helping new graduates enter the workforce with state-of-the-art technical skills and management insight from top industry leaders.

Professor Leonard Fuld teaches the Federal Income Taxation I course in the master's program.

Professor Leonard Fuld teaches the Federal Income Taxation I course in the master’s program.

Now in its fifth year, the master’s program has more than doubled its enrollment since its inception. However, the program’s intimate atmosphere ensures each student receives plenty of mentorship and creates opportunities for interaction with faculty—one of many elements that have made the master’s in accounting program so appealing to students all over the world.

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Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks to Take Part in Great Neck and Five Towns YU Weekends 

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Yeshiva University’s Kressel and Ephrat Family University Professor of Jewish Thought, will be speaking as part of two Yeshiva University Community Weekends in March on Long Island, one in Great Neck and the other in the Five Towns.

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Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks will take part in two Yeshiva University Long Island community weekends.

On Shabbat Parah, Parshat Vayakhel-Pekudei, March 13-14, Rabbi Sacks will present a Friday night lecture at 9 p.m. at the Great Neck Synagogue on “The Three Greatest Challenges Facing the Orthodox Community Today and their Solutions.” He will deliver the Shabbat morning drasha at the Young Israel of Great Neck at 11 a.m. on “From Exodus to the Modern Age: Living A Passionate Judaism.”

On Shabbat HaChodesh, Parshat Vayikra, March 21, Rabbi Sacks will deliver the Shabbat morning drasha on “The Book of Vayikra and Modern Day Sacrifice” following the 9 a.m. Shacharit minyan at the Young Israel of Lawrence-Cedarhurst. At 9 p.m. there will be a community Melave Malka at Congregation Beth Sholom with an introduction by YU President Richard M. Joel on “The Ethics of Responsibility: Building Our Jewish Future” and an armchair conversation with Rabbi Sacks, moderated by attorney Ben Brafman.

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Stern College Student Awarded Ackerman Family Dig Fellowship in Archaeology

Stern College for Women student Sima Fried, of Woodmere, New York, has been awarded a research fellowship in archaeology for the upcoming summer. The award, the Ackerman Family Dig Fellowship, covers the cost of room and board for the entire field season at Tell es-Safi/Gath in Israel.

Sima Fried, an anthropology student at Stern College for Women, labels a box at the dig.

Sima Fried, an anthropology student at Stern College for Women, labels a box at the dig.

Fried began her research last summer at the site of Tell es-Safi/Gath, also known as the biblical Goliath’s hometown, under the supervision of Dr. Jill Katz, clinical assistant professor of archaeology at Stern College, who is one of the area supervisors at the site. Along with other Yeshiva University students, Fried focused her research on the city’s fortification wall, analyzing its initial construction 5,000 years ago and its subsequent re-use by the Philistines during the time of the First Temple.

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