With Rockets Soaring Overhead, YU Students Take Part in Successful Archaeological Excavation in Biblical City of Gath
Most college students haven’t had the opportunity to immerse themselves in centuries-old history through a hands-on archaeological dig in Israel, and even fewer have done so amid blaring sirens warning of impending rocket attacks.
Yael Eisenberg, Shani Guterman, Dr. Jill Katz, Sarale Pool, Sima Fried and Asher Perez dig for artifacts in Tell es-Safi, Israel.
For five Yeshiva University undergraduates, a summer course that focused on investigating the archaeology, ecology and history of Tell es-Safi, the biblical city of Gath, took an unexpected twist when they found themselves in rocket range during Israel’s current Operation Protective Edge military offensive against Hamas in Gaza. The YU group, led by Dr. Jill Katz, clinical assistant professor of archaeology, was at Kibbutz Revadim on the southern coast of Israel near the Ashdod and Ashkelon regions when the conflict began.
“We were located 40 kilometers from Gaza and thus had about 45 seconds to run into a bomb shelter once we heard the siren,” said Katz. “While the kibbutz where we were staying had many accessible shelters, the dig site did not, and our instructions were simply to lie down in our excavation trenches for several minutes when the siren went off at the nearby power plant.” Read the rest of this entry…
Frenkel Receives $375,000 NSF Grant to Support Three Years of Joint Research with Hebrew University
Dr. Anatoly Frenkel, professor of physics at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, will serve as principal investigator on a three-year $675,000 grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF) for internationally collaborative study of colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals, tiny synthetic particles containing metal impurities whose properties have intriguing implications for the electronics, solar energy and biological fields.
Frenkel will work in tandem with Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Dr. Uri Banin, Alfred & Erica Larisch Memorial Chair at its Institute of Chemistry. The grant is administered by NSF, which awarded $375,000 to Frenkel’s group, and the Binational Science Foundation in Israel, which awarded $300,000 to Banin’s.
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Tenure Awarded to Faculty From Schools Across University
Continuing to build an intellectually diverse and rich scholarly community on campus and bolstering its top-level academic offerings, Yeshiva University has granted tenure to eight faculty members from across its undergraduate and graduate schools, in fields ranging from art history to mathematics and Judaic studies.
“After an arduous review, these newly tenured professors join an outstanding faculty who testify to the quality of Yeshiva University,” said Dr. Selma Botman, provost and vice president for academic affairs at YU. “Along with our recent reaccreditation and commendation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, faculty such as these exceptional educators, who bring distinction to our institution while dedicating themselves to student success and research excellence, are the hallmarks of a great university.” 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.”
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Robert Grad and Naomi Gofine to Participate in Yachad’s Inaugural Jewish Communal Leadership Fellowship
Two recent Yeshiva University graduates, Robert Grad ’14YC and Naomi Gofine ’14S, have been selected to serve as one of three fellows in Yachad’s inaugural Jewish Communal Leadership Fellowship program.
Yachad, the flagship program of the Orthodox Union’s National Jewish Council for Disabilities, provides social, educational and recreational programs for individuals with learning, developmental and physical disabilities with the goal of their inclusion in the Jewish community. The Fellows will function as full members of Yachad’s staff, working out of its national headquarters in Lower Manhattan with mentors who will provide integrated training and experiential opportunities to help the Fellows acquire proficiency in disability culture and Jewish organizational leadership. Read the rest of this entry…
Newly Graduated, Yeshiva University Alumni Find Career, Graduate School Success
As undergraduates, Yeshiva University students learn to balance a rich and vibrant range of academic, extracurricular and spiritual pursuits, dedicating themselves to rigorous Torah and secular study while discovering their passions, championing their beliefs and forming lasting friendships. So it’s no surprise that after commencement, they hit the ground running: more than 90 percent of YU graduates were employed, in graduate school, or both within 6 months of graduation, according to the most recent survey by YU’s Career Center.
“The fact that for the last six years, we’ve been at or above that 90 percent rate is impressive,” said Marc Goldman, executive director of the Career Center. “In particular, full time employment has risen even higher than in past years, with more than 85 percent of those employed working in full time positions—that number rises to more than 90 percent when you look at those who aren’t also in graduate school.”
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After 13 Years at the Helm, Outgoing Azrieli Dean Sheds Light on Advances in the Field
On June 30, Dr. David Schnall will step down after 13 years as dean of Yeshiva University’s Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education and Administration. An author and Fulbright Scholar, he expects to resume teaching and publishing at YU after a brief sabbatical. Schnall, who was recently named University Professor of Jewish Culture and Society, sat down with YU News to share his unique perspective and insight into the communal changes that are redefining the field of Jewish education and to discuss new frontiers for both the field and Azrieli.
Q: How have you seen the field of Jewish education change during your tenure as dean of Azrieli?
DS: To my mind, the focus of Jewish community life, particularly Orthodox Jewish life, has moved from social services and the synagogue to the school. The famous Mishna in Avot tells us that the world rests on three props: the study of Torah, prayer, and acts of mercy and compassion. It’s been suggested that Jews in the United States have accomplished all that, but in reverse order.
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Nine Yeshiva University Undergraduates Recognized for Exceptional Academic Achievements
More than 600 students from Yeshiva University’s undergraduate schools were awarded degrees at YU’s 83rd commencement exercises, held at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, NJ on May 22. Nine received the distinction of valedictorian, an honor that reflects exceptional academic achievement. As these new graduates begin the next stage of life and apply their talents to pursue a range of careers, they remembered the vibrant Jewish life and rich academic and extracurricular experiences that shaped their undergraduate years.
Valedictorians (L-R): Isaac Merkel, Malia Weiss, Avi Levinson, Devorah Levinson, Eli Shavalian, Eli Grunblatt, Benjy Lebowitz, Bella Wolf and Natan Koloski
“YU afforded me the unique opportunity to enhance my scientific pursuits with Torah knowledge,” said Bella Wolf, the valedictorian of Stern College for Women. “I feel that as a Jewish student majoring in the sciences, there is no other university that could better meld together my religious beliefs with my career goals.”
Wolf, an aspiring ophthalmologist, will attend YU’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the fall. “YU has an amazing science department which helped me in my pursuit to attend medical school,” she said. “I received incredibly valuable skills both in the research and medicinal field, as well as in life in general, from my four years at Stern.” Read the rest of this entry…
From World-Class Faculty to Unique Opportunities, Seniors Reflect on Yeshiva University Experience
On May 22, some 600 new graduates will march across the stage at the Izod Center to receive their diplomas during Yeshiva University’s 83rd Commencement Exercises, completing a foundational chapter in their educational journeys and moving on to exciting new opportunities. Before they toss their caps in the air, members of the Class of 2014 shared some of their favorite moments and the profound experiences that shaped their undergraduate careers, as well as dreams that started here but which they will carry with them all their lives.
“Yeshiva University created opportunities that I never dreamed of,” said Yosefa Schoor, of Monsey, New York, who hopes to attend medical school. Read the rest of this entry…
Stern College Class Charity Campaign Goes Viral; Raises $42,000 to Make Home Wheelchair Accessible
For the final project in his “Social Media to Drive Business Results” course at Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women, Adjunct Instructor Rob Longert gave students a simple assignment: raise money for a charitable cause by crowdfunding—collecting small amounts of money towards a shared goal from a large group of donors, usually via online platforms—using the social media tools they had learned in his class.
The group knew they had to focus on an achievable goal. They kept their expectations realistic. After meeting to discuss their options, they settled on the case of Sara Bezaley, a young girl from Great Neck, New York, who suffered terrible complications after contracting swine flu at age 7. Liran Weizman, a senior in the class majoring in public relations and psychology, had met Bezaley the year before while volunteering in the hospital where she was being treated and was immediately struck by her determination to fight and thrive. “Thank God, she’s a rock star,” Weizman said.
The class met with Bezaley’s family, created a video and a webpage, and came up with fun but inexpensive perks for donors. Then they launched their campaign, “Open Hearts, Open Doors,” on crowdfunding site Indiegogo and started reaching out via Twitter, Facebook and email. Their goal: $4,000 to make the bathrooms in Bezaley’s home wheelchair accessible. They gave themselves two weeks to raise the money. Read the rest of this entry…