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At Straus Center Event, Author Daniel Gordis Discusses The Life and Legacy of Menachem Begin

A fiery revolutionary and a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, a beloved founder of the State of Israel reviled by its first prime minister, a proud Jew but not a conventionally religious one: Menachem Begin, Israel’s sixth prime minister, was all of this and more. On April 1, Yeshiva University’s Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought hosted an intimate evening of conversation at the Yeshiva University Museum with Straus Center Director Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik and Dr. Daniel Gordis, author of the recent book Menachem Begin: The Battle for Israel’s Soul (Nextbook, April 2014), to discuss the complexities and contradictions of Begin’s life and legacy.

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Left to right: YU President Richard M. Joel welcomes guests to an evening of conversation with Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik and Dr. Daniel Gordis

“The two words that probably meant most to Menachem Begin were ‘Israel’ and ‘Jewish,’ and in his mind they were inextricably linked,” said YU President Richard M. Joel as he introduced the evening’s speakers. “At Yeshiva University, we reinforce the notion that Israel and Jewish identity have to be absolute, indivisible twins. We begin tonight by celebrating this year as the hundredth anniversary of Menachem Begin’s birth.”

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Yeshiva University Announces Micro-Grants for Student Social Entrepreneurs

Yeshiva University recently announced a new fund that will provide micro-grants to student social entrepreneurs founding startups that will benefit the broader Jewish and global communities.

Called “Neal’s Fund,” the initiative was created by the family of Neal Dublinsky. Dublinsky grew up in Queens, NY, and graduated as valedictorian with top honors from Yeshiva College before attending the New York University School of Law. He was diagnosed with the most advanced stage of lymphoma in 1987 at the age of 24, just as he was beginning his career as a corporate attorney in Los Angeles, CA. Despite medical setbacks, he fought his illness and went on to live a full life for another 23 years. Neal’s Fund was established by family, friends and colleagues of Dublinsky and commemorates his entrepreneurial spirit and sense of social responsibility.

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Menachem Begin Heritage Center Grant Supports YU Programming Honoring Former Prime Minister’s Legacy

Yeshiva University’s Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought received a $100,000 grant from the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem to sponsor a series of programs on Zionism and the Begin Legacy in honor of the former prime minister’s 100th birthday, which was commemorated in August.

Hart Hasten, right, with Menachem Begin

Hart Hasten, right, with Menachem Begin

Hart Hasten, president of US Friends of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation was instrumental in securing the grant for YU. Phil Rosen, vice chairman of the Yeshiva College Board, and Hasten’s son Bernard, a member of the Yeshiva College Board, also played significant roles.

“Menachem Begin became my hero and my mentor, a role model and an icon,” said Hasten, who along with his wife, Simona, were close friends of Begin for 25 years. Read the rest of this entry…

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Researchers to Study Diabetes Self-Management and Behavioral Interventions

More than 25 million Americans have diabetes, yet as many as 60 percent of type 2 diabetes patients do not follow treatment plans prescribed by their health care provider and about 50 percent fail to meet treatment recommendations for control of blood glucose levels. Consistent adherence to oral medications and injectable insulin, both used to keep blood glucose levels in check, is particularly challenging among young patients and ethnic minorities. Consequences are significant: lack of adherence can lead to or exacerbate eye disease, kidney disease and nerve damage.

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Dr. Jeffrey Gonzalez

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Dr. Anatoly Frenkel Receives Recognition in Science Magazine, Three Grants to Study Energy

Sometimes big change comes from small beginnings. That’s especially true in the research of Dr. Anatoly Frenkel, professor of physics at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, whose work seeks to reinvent the way we use and produce energy by unlocking the potential of some of the world’s tiniest structures: nanoparticles.

Anatoly Frenkel

Stern College’s Dr. Anatoly Frenkel has recently received more than $1 million in various grants to study energy.

“The nanoparticle is the smallest unit in most novel materials, and all of its properties are linked in one way or another to its structure,” said Frenkel. “If we can understand that connection, we can derive much more information about how it can be used for catalysis, energy and other purposes.”

That is the focus of three new grants Frenkel has recently been awarded. Read the rest of this entry…

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Einstein-Montefiore Researchers Secure $16 Million NIH Grant to Study HIV/AIDS in Women

Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University and Montefiore Medical Center have received a $16 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to investigate the impact of HIV and AIDS on women. The funds allow Montefiore and Einstein to continue as a scientific and clinical site for the Women’s Interagency HIV Study (WIHS), a multi-center, prospective, observational study of women who are either HIV-positive or at risk for HIV infection. The study is now entering its 21st year.  Read the rest of this entry…

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Four-Year $720,000 Grant will Enable Stern College’s Marina Holz to Investigate Breast Cancer Cell Growth

The American Cancer Society, the largest non-government, not-for-profit funding source of cancer research in the United States, has awarded Dr. Marina Holz, assistant professor of biology at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, a $720,000 Research Scholar Grant. The four-year grant will be used to continue her work researching how the mTOR pathway affects the growth of estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer.

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Yeshiva College Associate Dean’s Visit to Israel will Strengthen YU-Bar-Ilan Connection

Dr. Raji Viswanathan, associate dean of academic affairs and professor of chemistry at Yeshiva University’s Yeshiva College, was recently selected as a Fulbright Specialist. The competitive position will enable her to create new opportunities for collaboration between YU and Israel’s Bar-Ilan University as well as share her own research in computational chemistry with an advanced cadre of Israeli scholars.

Raji Viswanathan

Dr. Raji Viswanathan

The Fulbright Specialist program promotes linkage between American academic and professionals and their counterparts at host institutions overseas. Project activities focus on strengthening and supporting the developmental needs of host institutions abroad and can include short-term lecturing, conducting seminars, teacher training and special conferences of workshops, as well as collaborating on curriculum planning or institutional and faculty development. Each application is peer-reviewed.

“My goal is to initiate faculty and student exchange,” said Viswanathan. “We already have some connection with BIU through our summer science research program, which places talented undergraduates from Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women in one of the state-of-the-art research laboratories of BIU’s life science, exact science or engineering faculties.” Read the rest of this entry…

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Covenant Foundation Awards YU Museum Grant for Educational Partnership with Lincoln Center Institute 

On the basis of an innovative arts-based educational program, Yeshiva University Museum is the recipient of a prestigious Signature Grant from The Covenant Foundation, which develops and supports Jewish education and community-building projects and programs in the U.S.

Yeshiva University Museum will receive $135,900 over three years to expand Re-Imagining Jewish Education through Art, an initiative that uses the arts and critical inquiry to enhance and deepen learning and appreciation of Jewish texts and of art.

Through the program, the museum adapts an arts-based educational approach and philosophy pioneered by the Lincoln Center Institute for the Arts in Education, and re-conceives and applies it in Jewish schools. Read the rest of this entry…

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Grant to Encourage Community Day School Graduates to Study at Yeshiva University

The Kohelet Foundation is funding a scholarship for graduates of community day schools to encourage them to study at Yeshiva University, the country’s oldest Modern Orthodox institution of higher learning.

The Philadelphia-based Kohelet Foundation is giving Yeshiva $720,000 over the next six years to provide scholarships to students from Jewish community day schools, so-called because they are not attached to any one stream of Judaism. Modern Orthodox day schools and Yeshiva high schools comprise YU’s traditional base.

Five scholarships per year for enrollment at YU’s undergraduate schools—Yeshiva College, Stern College for Women and Sy Syms School of Business—will go to students from community day schools. Read the rest of this entry…

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