Yeshiva University News » CJF

On Center for the Jewish Future Missions, Students Help Haiti and Explore American Jewish Communities 

Over a whirlwind eight days, 36 Yeshiva University students took part in a humanitarian aid mission to Haiti and actively participated in the inner workings of small Jewish communities across the United States as part of two winter service learning programs organized by YU’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF). The undergraduates signed on to expand their educational horizons through the missions, from January 10-18, with one group of 15 students on the JDC (American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee) Insider’s Trip to Haiti and another group of 21 on Jewish Life Coast to Coast.

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Michal Segall, a participant on the mission to Haiti, teaches songs to students at the Prodev school in the town of Zoranje.

“For some, winter break is a chance to relax and reenergize before the beginning of a new semester,” said Rabbi Yaakov Glasser, David Mitzner Dean of CJF. “But for these students it was a life-transforming experience that instilled a deep commitment to the broader Jewish community and the world.” Read the rest of this entry…

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Leading Online Torah Study Resource Surpasses Major Milestone 

Begun as an ad-hoc gathering of shiur [lecture] recordings, YUTorah has become a formidable force in the spread of Torah learning worldwide, reaching a major milestone upon passing the 100,000 shiur mark this January.

yutorah“The growth of YUTorah has been exponential,” said Rabbi Robert Shur, director of YUTorah since 2007. “What started in 2004 with a little over 1,000 shiurim grew to 10,000 about two and a half years later. It took another five years to get to 50,000, with the second 50,000 taking less than three years.”

The list of contributors and lecturers is extensive, from across Yeshiva University and around the world. While some contributors have just a handful of recordings, there are 20 rabbis or lecturers with more than 1,000 uploaded to the site. Rabbi Hershel Schachter, Nathan and Vivian Fink Distinguished Professorial Chair in Talmud, and Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz, a daf yomi [daily Talmud study] contributor and host of the “Ten Minute Halacha” series on the site, each have more than 4,000. The recent addition of some 3,500 shiurim of Rabbi Moshe Weinberger, mashpiah at YU, now available free to the public for the first time, helped YUTorah break the 100,000 mark. Read the rest of this entry…

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CJF Winter Missions to Tackle Humanitarian Aid and Leadership Development in Haiti and Jewish Communities Across U.S.

Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF) will send 36 undergraduate students on two innovative service learning programs during the University’s upcoming winter intersession. From January 10-18, student leaders will take part in an array of hands-on community building projects on a humanitarian aid mission to Haiti and another group will travel across the United States to analyze how individuals can become active and make a difference in the country’s diverse Jewish communities.

On the JDC Insider Service Trip to Haiti, 15 Yeshiva University students will collaborate on several Jewish service learning projects and meet with JDC-partner organizations to learn about Haiti’s history and the humanitarian issues present in Haiti following the massive earthquake in January 2010. The JDC, the world’s largest Jewish humanitarian assistance organization, provides multifaceted programming developed for the Haitian population, including medical relief, emergency services, access to clean water and food, physical rehabilitation, education, post-trauma relief, and job training. Read the rest of this entry…

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Yeshiva University and RIETS Present December 25 Yarchei Kallah 

Yeshiva University and the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS) will present a communitywide Yarchei Kallah [gathering for Torah study] Thursday, December 25, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Jacob and Dreizel Glueck Center for Jewish Studies, 515 West 185th Street, New York City.

Sessions will focus on current issues facing the land of Israel, including shemittah [the Sabbatical year], the Temple Mount, halachic [Jewish law] ramifications of Israel’s proposed conversion bill, archeology in Jerusalem, as well as communal and social matters. Read the rest of this entry…

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Students, Faculty and Alumni Honored as Points of Light at Hanukkah Dinner

Students, faculty and alumni who embody the mission of Yeshiva University were recognized as “Points of Light” during the dinner portion of Yeshiva University’s 90th Annual Hanukkah Dinner and Convocation, held at New York City’s Waldorf-Astoria on December 14.

“The lesson of Hanukkah is that the Jewish people must cast the light of our values onto the world,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “Tonight, we publicize the lights that represent the past, present, and future of Yeshiva University.”

Read more about the Points of Light below. Read the rest of this entry…

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Yeshiva University Offers Online Child Abuse Prevention Course for Rabbis

Early each Monday morning, from 1:30 to 3:30 a.m., Rabbi Alon Meltzer wakes up and logs on to his computer, joining 20 other rabbis from countries around the world who are participating in a new online Yeshiva University course designed to help rabbinic leaders identify and protect their communities from the dangers of child abuse. As rabbi of the ACT Jewish Community, Inc., in Canberra, Australia, he considers the sleep loss a small price to pay.

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Victor Vieth

“It’s imperative that we, as rabbis in the Orthodox world, understand as much as we can about child abuse if we are going to navigate the complexity of emotions and pain of congregants, or anyone who has experienced an atrocity like this, as they seek guidance,” said Meltzer. “Continuing my education is paramount and the opportunities afforded to me through YU grants me, and by extension my community, access to the brightest minds in an array of fields.”

Jointly offered by YU’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF), YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS) and Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center, the course, “Addressing Child Abuse: Defining Roles, Enhancing Skills,” takes place over 12 weeks and features experts in fields that run the gamut from synagogue safety to emotional healing.

Read the rest of this entry…

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First Ever National Finals Outside of Israel Scheduled for November 30

Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future and the Orthodox Union will be co-sponsoring the U.S. National Bible Contest for Adults, an event that will determine which outstanding Bible scholars will represent the United States at the International Chidon HaTanach [Bible Contest] for Adults in Jerusalem in December.

Scheduled for Sunday, November 30, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. at the West Side Institutional Synagogue, 120 West 76th Street in Manhattan, the event will mark the first time in the contest’s history that national finals are taking place outside of Israel. In addition to the Bible competition, the event will include a musical performance and remarks by Israeli Consul-General Ido Aharoni and YU President Richard M. Joel.

“The International Bible Contest for Adults was developed to encourage the study of the Bible, strengthen ties with the Land of Israel, and deepen connections with Jewish heritage. As such, it is a natural partnership for Yeshiva University,” said Rabbi Kenneth Brander, YU’s vice president for university and community life. “We are thrilled to co-sponsor the event, and proud that so many of the participants have ties to the University.” Read the rest of this entry…

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YU Scholars to Offer “Perspectives on Teshuva And The Yamim Noraim” Throughout September

Yeshiva University’s Center for the Jewish Future launched its Kollel Yom Rishon continuing adult education programming on Sunday, September 7, with lectures from Rabbi Meir Goldwicht, Joel and Maria Finkle Visiting Israeli Rosh Yeshiva at YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), and Mrs. Chaya Batya Neugroschl, head of school at YU High School for Girls. The lectures were the first offerings of a month-long series titled “Perspectives on Teshuvah and the Yamim Noraim.”

This special edition of the popular Abraham Arbesfeld Kollel Yom Rishon and Millie Arbesfeld Midreshet Yom Rishon Sunday Torah learning series will meet every Sunday in September at the Schottenstein Center, 560 West 185th Street in Manhattan, and will feature an all-star lineup of Torah scholars and rabbinic thinkers from throughout Yeshiva University. Read the rest of this entry…

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President Richard M. Joel Addresses Thousands at Community-Wide Rally in Support of Israel  

More than 10,000 people gathered to show their support for Israel and its right to self-defense at a rally Monday afternoon, July 28, in Manhattan at Dag Hammerskjold Plaza outside the United Nations. The rally attracted throngs of passionate Israel supporters of all ages and backgrounds from across the region, including hundreds of children who traveled several hours by bus from their summer camps in Pennsylvania and upstate New York to be there.

Amid a sea of blue and white, participants waved Israeli and American flags and brandished signs proclaiming solidarity with Israel and condemning Hamas as a terrorist organization. Several dignitaries, politicians and religious leaders addressed the crowd, including Yeshiva University President Richard M. Joel. Read the rest of this entry…

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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.” Read the rest of this entry…

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