Yeshiva University News » Kenneth Brander

Medical Ethics Kollel Yom Rishon to Discuss Ethical and Halachic Implications of BRCA Screening and Elective Egg Freezing

On Sunday, February 15, Yeshiva University’s Student Medical Ethics Society, Center for the Jewish Future, Abraham Arbesfeld Kollel Yom Rishon and Millie Arbesfeld Midreshet Yom Rishon will partner to present a two-part program, “Taking Control: Ethical and Halachic Implications of BRCA Screening and Elective Egg Freezing.” The event will take place at the Schottenstein Center on Yeshiva University’s Wilf Campus at 560 West 185th Street, New York, NY, 10033, beginning at 9:30 a.m.

The first half of the program, “Testing for Cancer Risk in the Jewish Community: Medical and Halachic Perspectives,” will feature a discussion led by Dr. Edward Reichman, professor of emergency medicine and professor of education and bioethics at YU’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and Dr. Nicole Schreiber-Agus, director of the Program for Jewish Genetic Health. Reichman and Schreiber-Agus will provide halachic and medical insight into the prevalence of BRCA gene mutations in Ashkenazi Jewry and the ways that genetic testing and counseling can reduce the risk of carriers developing certain cancers in the future.

The second part of the program, “Oocyte Cryopreservation: Freezing Eggs, New Technologies to Help Single Women and Cancer Patients,” will take a close look at the painful question of whether Orthodox Jewish women who may not be able to have children later in life—whether because of illness, future cancer treatments, or marriages close to or beyond menopause—should take advantage of a new medical technique called oocyte cryopreservation, which enables women to freeze their eggs and maintain the potential for the future conception of a child. As cryopreservation technologies are constantly being re-innovated and improved, Rabbi Dr. Zalman Levine, the director of the Fertility Institute of New York and New Jersey, and Rabbi Kenneth Brander, an expert in reproductive technology bioethics and halacha in addition to his position as vice president for university and community life at YU, will give an overview of the emerging halachic discussions that arise in this ever-changing field.

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Yeshiva High School Wrestlers From Across the Country to Take Part in Annual Competition

Yeshiva University will host the 20th annual Henry Wittenberg Wrestling Tournament from February 13 – 16, at the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus. Sponsored entirely by Yeshiva University, the program will bring together 250 wrestlers from 15 yeshiva high schools across the country.

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The Wittenberg Wrestling Tournament runs February 13-16

In addition to the exciting competition, the long weekend will also include a Shabbaton complete with communal meals, spirited games, a tribute to YU Wrestling Coach Neil Ellman and tournament coordinator Brian Ostrow, and an inspirational lecture by two-time Paralympic Games gold medalist Marlon Shirley, the “World’s Fastest Amputee.”

“This weekend is the highlight of the yeshiva high school wrestling calendar,” said Rabbi Kenneth Brander Read the rest of this entry…

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More Than 450 Students From Around the World to Tackle Global Issues February 8-10

Some 450 students from Jewish high schools around the world will gather at the Stamford Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Stamford, Connecticut, February 8-10, to participate in the 25th annual Yeshiva University National Model United Nations conference (YUNMUN). Simulating the countries and committees from the real United Nations, student delegates from 44 yeshiva high schools and community day schools across 3 continents will discuss a wide range of issues, including gender roles, human rights and international law.

12491827615_b8e8a1fdf5_zMore than 60 YU undergraduate students and 65 faculty advisers will be on-hand at the event to ensure that the student-run simulation runs smoothly, allowing participants to learn about the complex landscape of international diplomacy.

“Yeshiva University hosts a Model United Nations because it is critical that we educate students about our mandate to matter. We must consistently reinforce a responsibility for helping shape the destiny of civilization,” said Rabbi Kenneth Brander, YU’s vice president for university and community life. 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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Having Recently Completed Their Service, IDF Vets Begin College Careers at Yeshiva University

One night, as Ethan Gipsman, a light machine-gunner in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) from San Diego, California, stood guard over a group of suspected terrorists in the West Bank, one of them asked him a surprising question: What was Ethan, an American, doing there? “He said, ‘I thought America had everything,’ ” Gipsman recalled. “ ‘Why would you leave your country to come here?’ ”

Having recently completed their IDF service, Shmuel Goldis, Jonathan Sidlow, Daniel Gofine and Ethan Gipsman are beginning their college careers at Yeshiva University.

Gipsman thought about his answer for most of the night before replying, in a mixture of Arabic, English and Hebrew, “There is only one Jewish country in the world. I left America because, as a Jew, I have an obligation to protect it.”

His answer resonates strongly with several lone soldiers—enlistees from America and countries around the world who come to Israel to serve in the IDF—who, like Gipsman, recently began their studies at Yeshiva University. 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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Ninth Annual Service Learning Program to Empower 300 Israeli Youth, Receive Support From Local Municipalities

The Yeshiva University Center for the Jewish Future’s (CJF) Counterpoint Israel Program, an immersive service-learning initiative that aims to empower the next generation of Israeli youth via an exciting, Jewish values-driven summer camp experience, has been retooled to maximize manpower efficiency and its impact on the Israeli communities it serves.

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YU students will help empower some 300 underprivileged youth throughout Israel this summer as part of the Counterpoint program.

Over the last several years, undergraduate students from Yeshiva University ran four separate summer camps in the cities of Arad, Dimona, Kiryat Gat and Kiryat Malachi concurrently. Basing itself on the North American Jewish camping system, this year’s program will offer two separate camp sessions, making it possible for YU students to focus their undivided attention and complete creativity on two cities at a time.

The YU students, natives of North America, Colombia and Chile, will run camps in Kiryat Gat and Kiryat Malachi from June 29 – July 10 before relocating to Dimona and Arad for the second session, scheduled for July 13 – 24. Read the rest of this entry…

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Rabbi David Baruch Lau Meets with Roshei Yeshiva, Center for the Jewish Future Staff

20140508_chief_rabbi_53On May 8, Rabbi David Baruch Lau, the Ashkenazi chief rabbi of Israel, visited Yeshiva University. The chief rabbi met with Roshei Yeshiva at YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and YU President Richard M. Joel. He also spoke with YU’s Center for the Jewish Future senior staff about their work around the world with rabbis, communities and students, and toured the Wilf Campus and the Jacob and Dreizel Glueck Center for Jewish Studies with students.

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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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