Yeshiva University News » 2009 » July » 29

Jul 29, 2009 — Yeshiva University in New York held its first combined Undergraduate Dinner on June 17, 2009 at Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers in New York City.

The honorees for Stern College for Women were Suzanne and Miles Berger; for the Sy Syms School of Business, Philip Friedman; and for Yeshiva College, Ben Chouake, M.D. The event raised $400,000 for undergraduate scholarships.

The Dinner Chairs were Stanley Raskas, Chair of the Yeshiva College Board; Doris Travis, Treasurer of the Stern College for Women Board; and Warren Eisenberg of the Sy Syms School of Business Board of directors.


Dr. Louise Silverstein, professor at Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology.

Jul 29, 2009 — As the surviving generation of the Holocaust enters their twilight years, a new research project spearheaded by Dr. Louise Silverstein, a professor at Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, is examining how knowledge of the Holocaust is passed down to survivors’ grandchildren and taught at schools.

The multi-phase, long-term study began in 2007, with the support of the Rabbi Arthur Schneier Center for International Affairs, by creating an archive of interviews with grandchildren of Holocaust survivors. Recent Ferkauf graduates Dr. Penina Dorfman ’09F and Marina Stolerman ’09F interviewed almost 30 third-generation, or “3G,” young adults and found a wide diversity of experiences.

“Some of the grandchildren knew a lot about their grandparents’ experiences while others knew very little,” Silverstein said.

Some participants were devoting their professional lives to studying the Holocaust while others stated that they almost never thought about the tragedy. One reported being continually haunted by thoughts of her grandparents’ suffering.

Silverstein became interested in learning about how the Holocaust was being taught in the U.S. and in Israel—and thus began the second phase of the project. Silverstein teamed up with Dr. Tal Litvak-Hirsch of Ben Gurion University—whom she met while on a trip to Israel to study Yad Vashem’s archives—to conduct a collaborative study comparing Israeli and U.S. educational approaches to teaching the Holocaust, and the effects of these educational efforts on 3G young adults. Sharon Peled, a Ferkauf doctoral student, is collecting and analyzing this data.

“One of the main findings that is emerging is the lack of a formal, standardized curriculum for teaching about the Holocaust in the U.S.,” Silverstein said. “Teaching is informal and highly variable. We find this state of affairs concerning. How can we be sure that the Holocaust will never be forgotten if it is not being taught well or even at all?”

In the project’s third phase, two Ferkauf graduate students, Dana Marnin and Penina Weiss, are compiling a bibliography of the variety of educational approaches to teaching the Holocaust in the U.S.

“Our goal is to identify the best programs and create a model curriculum that we will recommend to various state and national educational organizations,” Silverstein said. “We anticipate that new questions will arise as the research continues. Thus we eagerly look forward to additional phases in this project.”


Dr. Carmen Ortiz Hendricks (L), associate dean and professor, and Dr. Sheldon R. Gelman (R), the Dorothy and David I. Schachne Dean of Wurzweiler.

Jul 29, 2009 — Wurzweiler School of Social Work’s Dr. Sheldon R. Gelman, the Dorothy and David I. Schachne Dean, and Dr. Carmen Ortiz Hendricks, associate dean and professor, have been named “Social Work Pioneers” by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). The award recognizes social work professionals for their exemplary leadership, outstanding contributions to the field and recognition by their peers. Both have held leadership positions within the NASW.

Gelman, who also has a master of studies degree in law from Yale University Law School, has published numerous articles dealing with the impact of legislation and policies on the delivery of social services. He has contributed sections to important resources such as The Encyclopedia of Social Work, The Social Workers’ Desk Reference and The Handbook of Human Services Management.

Gelman has held office and served on national commissions of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), including its board and its Commission on Accreditation, and the American Association on Mental Retardation.

Hendricks has made significant contributions to the profession in the area of culturally competent social work education and practice. As a member of NASW’s National Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity, she was a major contributor to the development of its Standards for Cultural Competence in the Social Work Practice. She is a founding member of the chapter’s Latino Social Work Task Force.

Hendricks has co-written or co-edited a number of seminal books published by CSWE Press, including Learning to Teach—Teaching to Learn: A Guide to Social Work Field Education, Intersecting Child Welfare, Substance Abuse and Family Violence: Culturally Competent Approaches and Women of Color as Social Work Educators: Strengths and Survival.