Yeshiva University News » 2012 » May » 29

Cynthia Wachtell on New York State’s Flawed Public School Standardized Testing

Here is a modest proposal. Let’s have private school students take the same standardized tests that public school students now take each year.

Cynthia Wachtell

Dr. Cynthia Wachtell is the director of the S. Daniel Abraham Honors Program at YU.

While we are at it, let’s require private school teachers to be absent from their students’ classrooms for the same number of days as public school teachers, who now must serve as conscripted graders for the standardized tests. Read the rest of this entry…


Ten Undergraduate Valedictorians Recognized for Their Academic Achievements by Respective Schools

More than 750 students from Yeshiva University’s undergraduate schools were presented with their degrees at YU’s 81st commencement exercises, held at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, NJ on May 24. Ten received the distinction of valedictorian, an honor that reflects their exceptional academic achievement.

Valedictorians (L-R): Elana Sand, Chana Zuckier, Jennifer Lazaros, Yair Saperstein, Gregory Kupsin, Yehuda Safier, Anosh Moshe Zaghi, Avi Libman and Jesse Bernstein. Not pictured: Sultana Shoshani.

As the new graduates prepared to take their drive, creativity and dedication to a range of exciting careers and challenges, from medical school and finance to academic law and communal leadership, they recalled the close relationships with faculty, vibrant Jewish life and rich academic and extracurricular experiences that shaped their undergraduate years at Yeshiva. Read the rest of this entry…


Rabbi Benjamin Blech: You Don’t Need to be Religious to Appreciate the Dangers of the Internet

Mark Zuckerberg had quite a week.

The 28-year-old founder of Facebook officially became a multi-billionaire and one of the wealthiest people in the world the day his company went public. Then, in a short few days, he watched his net worth diminished by several billion dollars when his company made history as one of the greatest IPO flops.

Rabbi Benjamin Blech

Rabbi Benjamin Blech is Professor of Talmud at Yeshiva University

While large IPOs on average trade up by 20% on their first day, Facebook’s flat performance on day one, and nearly 11% decline on day two, set the stage for further declines in what remains an unfinished story about a stock whose future remains highly uncertain to Wall Street and the investment community. In the wake of the unfolding scandal, investors are suing and the entire IPO process is being called into question.

But Zuckerberg still had one more momentous event scheduled for his IPO week. On that Saturday he got married to his longtime sweetheart. From a traditional Jewish perspective, the fact that it was an intermarriage, effectively insuring that the Zuckerberg Jewish lineage would now come to an end, was far more tragic than the fate of a failed stock offering. While there are no fears about the couple’s future financial security, no matter how much Facebook stock continues to underperform, it is fascinating to speculate on their marriage’s chances for long-term bliss based on hubby’s impact on contemporary society’s mores. Read the rest of this entry…