Frenkel Receives $375,000 NSF Grant to Support Three Years of Joint Research with Hebrew University

Dr. Anatoly Frenkel, professor of physics at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, will serve as principal investigator on a three-year $675,000 grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) for internationally collaborative study of colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals, tiny synthetic particles containing metal impurities whose properties have intriguing implications for the electronics, solar energy and biological fields.

Anatoly FrenkelFrenkel will work in tandem with Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Dr. Uri Banin, Alfred & Erica Larisch Memorial Chair at its Institute of Chemistry. The grant is administered by NSF, which awarded $375,000 to Frenkel’s group, and the Binational Science Foundation in Israel, which awarded $300,000 to Banin’s.

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Rabbi Yaakov Glasser Appointed David Mitzner Dean of Center for the Jewish Future

Rabbi Yaakov Glasser ’99YC, ’01R, has been appointed the David Mitzner Dean of Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF). He succeeds Rabbi Kenneth Brander, who served as inaugural dean of the CJF for the past nine years and will continue to oversee the CJF, student life, undergraduate admissions and YU’s Israel campus in his role as vice president for university and community life.

Yaakov Glasser

Rabbi Yaakov Glasser has been appointed David Mitzner Dean of the Center for the Jewish Future.

Rabbi Glasser joined the CJF in February as associate dean. As dean, he will oversee all the personnel and programming initiatives at the CJF, including training rabbis and lay leaders, spreading Torah to communities worldwide and running programs and service missions across North America and beyond.

“It is a great privilege to assume the leadership of an institution dedicated to bringing the Torah and wisdom of Yeshiva University to the broader Jewish community,” said Rabbi Glasser. “In a generation where so many are searching for inspiration and meaning, the CJF innovates programs and initiatives that empower both rabbinic and lay leaders to reach our community and beyond. I am fortunate to build on the foundation of creativity and leadership of Rabbi Brander, whose vision has established the CJF as a powerful force for communal transformation and change throughout North America. It is humbling to hold a position that is so closely connected with the Mitzner family and to perpetuate their values and ideals through the work of the CJF.”

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Tenure Awarded to Faculty From Schools Across University

Continuing to build an intellectually diverse and rich scholarly community on campus and bolster its top-level academic offerings, Yeshiva University has granted tenure to eight faculty members from across its undergraduate and graduate schools, in fields ranging from art history to mathematics and Judaic studies.

“After an arduous review, these newly tenured professors join an outstanding faculty who testify to the quality of Yeshiva University,” said Dr. Selma Botman, provost and vice president for academic affairs at YU. “Along with our recent reaccreditation and commendation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, faculty such as these exceptional educators, who bring distinction to our institution while dedicating themselves to student success and research excellence, are the hallmarks of a great university.”

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Learning to Understand Diverse Populations, Wurzweiler Students Visit NJ Penitentiary

On July 9 a group of students from Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work went to Northern State Prison in Newark, New Jersey—not because they committed any crime, but as part of their training to offer social services to diverse populations in need.

134963659“When I first began bringing students to Northern State Prison, it immediately became apparent that it was a powerful experience and more trips were added,” said Dr. Jill Becker-Feigeles, an adjunct assistant professor at Wurzweiler, who has accompanied students on more than 20 such trips since 2003. “The trip brings together so many facets of the students’ social work education: the ways incarceration impacts development at various stages of an individual’s life, issues with policy implications, diversity and ethics. Most importantly, the trip puts a human face on a population sorely in need of services and largely unrecognized, and has become the highlight of the students’ first year at Wurzeiler.”

At the prison—a maximum-security facility that houses an adult population of male offenders for mostly violent crimes—the group first heard from Wanda Carrero, the prison’s educational coordinator, who provided a brief orientation about what to expect.

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YU Undergraduates Participate in Cutting-Edge Summer Scientific Research Program at Einstein

After a challenging year of academic study as a biology major concentrating in molecular and cellular biology at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, Liat Weinstock, of Cedarhurst, New York, isn’t spending her well-deserved summer break at camp or on a beach. Instead, she’s working with Dr. Rebecca Madan’s pediatric infectious diseases team on a research study examining the effects of certain drug-resistant bacteria on transplant patients after their operations.

2014 Roth Scholars

From left: Natan Tracer, Liat Weinstock, Shira Kaye, Hadassa Holzapfel, Adi Cohen, Esther Kazlow, Jacqueline Benayoun, Bracha Robinson and Tamar Ariella Lunzer

“If we’re able to uncover some new information about how our immune system works and recovers, we can then change how we practice medicine to better treat patients with diseases,” said Weinstock. “My responsibilities here have been especially interesting to me because they almost feel like detective work—I find clues in patients’ charts that lead me to the correct labs and test results to determine whether a patient will fit our study or not. Putting together all the clues and coming up with an answer is an exciting ‘Eureka!’ moment.”

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Yeshiva University and Orthodox Union Offer Joint Learning Programs for Three Weeks and Tisha B’Av

Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF) and the Orthodox Union (OU) will once again combine efforts on programs for the Three Weeks and Nine Days leading to Tisha B’Av, to be followed by a variety of shiurim [lectures]on Tisha B’Av itself.

The Three Weeks begin on Tuesday, July 15— the Fast of Shiva Asar B’Tammuz, the Fast of the 17th of Tammuz, with its restrictions on levity. The Nine Days, with its deeper restrictions, begin on Sunday night, July 27, Rosh Chodesh Av. Tisha B’Av itself, the Ninth of Av, extends from Monday evening August 4, until nightfall Tuesday, August 5.

“We are proud to partner with the Orthodox Union in providing our community with an inspirational program for Tisha B’Av,” said Rabbi Yaakov Glasser, David Mitzner Dean of the CJF. “This collection of shiurim address the meaning and poignancy of Tisha B’Av in the framework of our contemporary Jewish experience.”

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Jacob “Jake” Harman Appointed Vice President of Business Affairs and Chief Financial Officer of Yeshiva University 

Yeshiva University President Richard M. Joel has announced the appointment of Jacob “Jake” Harman as the new Vice President of Business Affairs and Chief Financial Officer, effective July 10, 2014.

“We are excited to make this announcement as Jake brings to YU a deep skill-set with more than 35 years of experience and expertise as a seasoned well-rounded financial executive,” said President Joel. “We are confident that Jake will provide new energy, focus, and commitment to YU’s finance operations at this important juncture in the University’s development of a long-term sustainable business model.”

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Dr. Rona Novick: How Educators Can Arm Students With Hope in an Increasingly Dangerous World

On my first day as Dean of the Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education, three innocent Israeli victims of terrorism – teenagers – were laid to rest. The unity of the past weeks and the pain and sheer terror of the past few days beg consideration: are there any lessons here regarding what educators should be teaching their students?

Dr. Rona Novick

Dr. Rona Novick, dean of YU’s Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education

We are not the first generation, and I fear we will not be the last, that needs to teach children about danger and safety. Difficult lessons about a world where even children who do no wrong become ill, and where there are cruel adults and children who can and will hurt other children have been and will continue to be taught. Such lessons require delicate balance. If we err on the side of lollipops and sunshine, we lose credibility as trustworthy and knowledgeable adults when terror or trauma strikes. If we open children’s eyes wide to the doom, gloom and ever-present dangers, we risk raising a generation of anxious, terrified citizens.

Whether it is the discomfort of modulating between opposite poles of all is good, and the world is evil, or the fact that when we cannot promise safety, it seems providing any guidance or support is futile, adults may avoid these tough lessons.

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New Course Prepares Psychology Students to Evaluate and Work With Asylum Seekers

The threat of persecution due to one’s religious or political beliefs may be unimaginable to most United States citizens, but for many people abroad, that threat is real and frightening, causing them to flee and seek refuge elsewhere.

Dr. Bill Sultan

Dr. Bill Salton

Last year, two professors at the Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Dr. Bill Salton and Dr. Carl Auerbach, began researching the topic of asylum after a colleague, Dr. Barbara Eisold, suggested that asylum seekers be evaluated at the school’s Max and Celia Parnes Family Psychological and Psychoeducational Services Clinic. They brought this suggestion to Dr. Lawrence Siegel, dean of Ferkauf, and to Dr. Lata McGinn, associate professor of psychology and director of the clinical psychology program, who offered their support for the project.

Salton, associate clinical professor of psychology and clinical director of the Parnes Clinic, and Auerbach, professor of psychology, soon enrolled in intensive training sessions designed to qualify them as evaluators. They also enlisted the participation of their students, leading to the creation of a class devoted solely to training students in this specialized field.

The inaugural course, “Working With Asylum Seekers,” was offered last spring and taught students how to psychologically evaluate asylum seekers and write reports that would be presented in court on their behalf.

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Robert Grad and Naomi Gofine to Participate in Yachad’s Inaugural Jewish Communal Leadership Fellowship

Two recent Yeshiva  University graduates, Robert Grad ’14YC and Naomi Gofine ’14S, have been selected to serve as one of three fellows in Yachad’s inaugural Jewish Communal Leadership Fellowship program.

Robert Grad

Robert Grad

Yachad, the flagship program of the Orthodox Union’s National Jewish Council for Disabilities, provides social, educational and recreational programs for individuals with learning, developmental and physical disabilities with the goal of their inclusion in the Jewish community. The Fellows will function as full members of Yachad’s staff, working out of its national headquarters in Lower Manhattan with mentors who will provide integrated training and experiential opportunities to help the Fellows acquire proficiency in disability culture and Jewish organizational leadership.

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