Yeshiva University Faculty Receive Grants from U.S. Department of Defense Agency
Two Yeshiva University faculty members have been awarded grants by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, the United States Department of Defense’s official Combat Support Agency for countering weapons of mass destruction.
Dr. Sergey Buldyrev’s grant analyzes the catastrophic cascade of failures in interdependent networks.
Dr. Sergey Buldyrev, professor of physics at Yeshiva College, is a principal investigator on a multi-year $450,000 grant analyzing the catastrophic cascade of failures in interdependent networks. Picture the connections between power grids, waterworks, Internet cables and other systems—if one part of one system goes down, it initiates a domino effect on each network it’s connected to, taking others down with it. “Supposing a terrorist attacks a certain power station—they’re smart enough to find the one most likely to cause a computer shutdown, which could shut off control of gas or water,” said Buldyrev. “Everything could shut down. This catastrophic collapse of infrastructure—the ‘cascade of failures’—is what people imagine when they think about what might happen at the end of the world.”
Students Explore Literary and Scientific St. Petersburg on Summer Honors Courses
It’s the birthplace of some of the world’s most celebrated works of literature and significant scientific discoveries—but has also witnessed the rise and fall of one of its most powerful empires in recent history. Understanding the nuanced history of Russia’s second-largest city, Saint Petersburg, is critical to understanding the remarkable impact its natives have made in fields ranging from art to physics. This summer, two courses in the Jay and Jeanie Schottenstein Honors Program at Yeshiva University decided to ground students in the city’s rich, complicated context by making all of Saint Petersburg their classroom.
Members of the course with Dr. Gabriel Cwilich (fourth from right) at the Memorial to Victims of Political Repression along the Neva River
“Saint Petersburg is such a unique city, and not only for its extraordinary collection of some of the top art museums, art theaters and great palaces of the world,” said Dr. Gabriel Cwilich, director of the Honors program. “It was conceived by its founder Peter the Great as a window to the west but at the same time it is so rooted in the history of Russia, an example of the rationalist mind that created it in the eve of the 18th century, but also steeped in tradition. Where else can you find a city in which every single square or corner remembers and celebrates their prodigal sons or daughters, almost all musicians, painters, writers, scientists or engineers?” Read the rest of this entry…
YU Undergraduates Participate in Cutting-Edge Summer Scientific Research Program at Einstein
After a challenging year of academic study as a biology major concentrating in molecular and cellular biology at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, Liat Weinstock, of Cedarhurst, New York, isn’t spending her well-deserved summer break at camp or on a beach. Instead, she’s working with Dr. Rebecca Madan’s pediatric infectious diseases team on a research study examining the effects of certain drug-resistant bacteria on transplant patients after their operations.
From left: Natan Tracer, Liat Weinstock, Shira Kaye, Hadassa Holzapfel, Adi Cohen, Esther Kazlow, Jacqueline Benayoun, Bracha Robinson and Tamar Ariella Lunzer
“If we’re able to uncover some new information about how our immune system works and recovers, we can then change how we practice medicine to better treat patients with diseases,” said Weinstock. “My responsibilities here have been especially interesting to me because they almost feel like detective work—I find clues in patients’ charts that lead me to the correct labs and test results to determine whether a patient will fit our study or not. Putting together all the clues and coming up with an answer is an exciting ‘Eureka!’ moment.”
Michal Leibowitz Captures Top Prize for Project on Bedbugs
Michal Leibowitz of White Plains, a senior at Samuel H. Wang Yeshiva University High School for Girls (YUHSG) won first place at the New York State Science and Engineering Fair for her project, “Engineering A Novel Cimex Lectularius (bedbug!) Trapping Mechanism Utilizing Electrospun Recycled Polymers,” which was chosen out of 200 other submissions. The project, which she worked on with Jacob Plaut from Rambam Mesivta and Daniel Rudin from Half Hollow Hills High School West, also won “Second Award” in Environmental Management at the International Science and Engineering Fair and earned a $1,500 prize. In addition, she and her fellow students will have an asteroid named after them.
First Multidisciplinary Research Day Highlights Undergraduate Students’ Work in Wide Range of Fields
On November 15, Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women hosted their first joint Research Day across multiple disciplines. The event celebrated the research of undergraduates in fields ranging from the humanities to natural and mathematical sciences and allowed students to share their work and hone their presentation skills, while providing attendees an opportunity to learn from their peers and get a taste of the rich, exciting world of research.
A student explains her research to Dr. Rachel Mesch, one of the event’s judges.
The program began with keynote presentations from students representing the social sciences, natural sciences and the humanities. Yael Farzan, a Stern College student whose research focused on religion and expressive writing as predictors of prosocial behavior, noted that despite their differences, researchers in these fields shared similar qualities. “To be a good psychologist you need to ask questions, open your eyes and be curious about the world around you,” she said. “We are all by nature psychologists and sociologists.”
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.
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.”
Eleven YU Undergrads Participate in Advanced Biomedical Research Program
Eleven Yeshiva University undergraduates have been selected to participate in the Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP), an advanced biomedical research program at YU’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Directed by Dr. Victoria Freedman, Einstein’s associate dean for graduate programs in the biomedical sciences, and Dr. Barry Potvin, professor of biology at Yeshiva College and visiting professor in the cell biology department at Einstein, the program has drawn 58 students in total from a variety of colleges and universities to engage in cutting-edge scientific studies.
Stern College’s Nechama Dreyfus is conducting research in the animal imaging lab at Einstein’s Nuclear Medicine and Biophysics Department.
In fields ranging from neuroscience to epidemiology to microbiology, the students receive hands-on research experience in their areas of interest normally reserved for graduate-level work.
“I’m particularly enjoying my placement in Dr. Linda Jelicks’s animal imaging lab within the Nuclear Medicine and Biophysics Department at Einstein because this technology and field are completely new to me,” said Nechama Dreyfus, a biochemistry major at Stern College for Women. Read the rest of this entry…
Summer Science Research Program Pairs YU Students with Bar-Ilan Faculty; Opens Door for Future Collaboration
Twenty eight select undergraduate science majors from Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women are participating in the third Summer Science Research Internship program, a joint initiative with Yeshiva University and Bar-Ilan University (BIU) that enables students to gain hands-on experience in emerging scientific fields while being mentored by Israel’s top scientists.
Yeshiva College’s David Kornbluth takes part in the Summer Science Research Internship Program at Bar-Ilan.
During the seven-week research experience, the students are placed in intensive internships with top BIU faculty members, including those from the Institute for Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials and the Gonda Brain Research Center, and will work in the University’s state-of-the-art research laboratories.
The program, which runs from June 23 – August 8, was founded by Dr. Chaim Sukenik, a Yeshiva College alumnus who holds the Edward and Judy Steinberg Chair in Nanotechnology at Bar-Ilan and was recently appointed incoming president of the Jerusalem College of Technology. Read the rest of this entry…
Eli Grunblatt and Gilad Barach Receive Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship
Yeshiva College juniors Gilad Barach and Eli Grunblatt have been awarded the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, a highly competitive grant that supports undergraduates who intend to pursue careers in science, math or engineering.
Gilad Barach and Eli Grunblatt of Yeshiva College have been awarded the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship.
“Our track record of recipients of the prestigious Barry M. Goldwater scholarship for scientific research clearly indicates the excellence of the science education at Yeshiva College, which can be favorably compared with undergraduate college experiences at larger research universities,” said Yeshiva College Dean Barry Eichler. “The quality of our student body and that of our science faculty’s commitment to mentor undergraduates in the sciences is truly impressive.”