Wurzweiler’s Susan Bendor to Retire in January After Five Decades Dedicated to Social Work
Over half a century after she began her career as a social worker, Dr. Susan Bendor will retire in January, capping off 26 years at Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work and a remarkable 52 years in the field.
Wurzweiler’s Dr. Susan Bendor has dedicated her career to helping others.
Born in Budapest, Hungary, Bendor survived the Holocaust as a young child by hiding in a cellar for nine months. By the time she was 21, she had lived in six countries—Hungary, Austria, Switzerland, Canada, Israel and Germany—and by 25, she had earned her master’s degree. Her interest in social work can be traced back to her family’s early years in Canada.
“Thanks to a wonderful hospital social worker who helped our immigrant family through a very rough crisis and lightened the burden on our young shoulders, giving all of us a sense of hope, I realized how important and satisfying it must be to make such a difference in the lives of families coping with a variety of challenges beyond their control,” said Bendor. “I decided to follow in his footsteps. It was a privilege to enter a profession that is committed to social justice and to treating everyone with dignity, as were the individuals who saved our lives during World War II and continue to inspire me even today.” Read the rest of this entry…
Wurzweiler School of Social Work Celebrates Dr. Joyce Brenner’s 27 Years of Service to its Block Program
Upon her retirement, Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work celebrated Dr. Joyce Brenner’s more than 27 years of service to its Block Program in Israel by naming her the first recipient of its Distinguished Alumni Award at the Block Program Commencement on July 23.
Dr. Joyce Brenner delivered the keynote address at this year’s Block Program Commencement
“Dr. Brenner has literally been a part of Wurzweiler from its beginnings in 1957, entering our Masters of Social Work program in 1962,” said Dr. Carmen Ortiz Hendricks, Dorothy and David Schachne Dean of Wurzweiler. “She has single-handedly developed and strengthened the relationship between Wurzweiler and the Block Israeli Field Work Program for 27 years. She is the face of Wurzweiler in Israel and a respected leader of the social work profession as well. Dr. Brenner has earned the Distinguished Alumni Award, as she leaves a legacy of hundreds of professional social workers serving the people of Israel and the U.S.”
Learning to Understand Diverse Populations, Wurzweiler Students Visit NJ Penitentiary
On July 9 a group of students from Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work went to Northern State Prison in Newark, New Jersey—not because they committed any crime, but as part of their training to offer social services to diverse populations in need.
“When I first began bringing students to Northern State Prison, it immediately became apparent that it was a powerful experience and more trips were added,” said Dr. Jill Becker-Feigeles, an adjunct assistant professor at Wurzweiler, who has accompanied students on more than 20 such trips since 2003. “The trip brings together so many facets of the students’ social work education: the ways incarceration impacts development at various stages of an individual’s life, issues with policy implications, diversity and ethics. Most importantly, the trip puts a human face on a population sorely in need of services and largely unrecognized, and has become the highlight of the students’ first year at Wurzeiler.”
At the prison—a maximum-security facility that houses an adult population of male offenders for mostly violent crimes—the group first heard from Wanda Carrero, the prison’s educational coordinator, who provided a brief orientation about what to expect. Read the rest of this entry…
Eating disorders—which affect people of all ages and ethnicities and have the highest premature mortality rate of any mental illness—are often kept hidden, complicating treatment and prevention efforts. Recognizing the seriousness and increasing prevalence of eating disorders, Ferkauf and Wurzweiler are training more psychologists and social workers to diagnose and treat people who suffer from these devastating illnesses.
The event, cosponsored by the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), will be open to the public and feature three experts in the field: Dr. Esther Altmann, an educator and clinical psychologist in private practice who served as an eating disorders consultant to Jewish organizations; Ilene V. Fishman, a social worker specializing in the treatment of eating disorders who taught Wurzweiler’s first elective course on the topic last fall; and Dr. Yael Latzer, professor at Haifa University and director of the Eating Disorders Clinic of Rambam Medical Center, which she founded in 1992. Read the rest of this entry…
Wurzweiler initially held an advance screening of the film, which won Best Narrative Feature at the Metropolitan Film Festival, NYC Independent Film Festival, and the Buffalo/Niagara Film Festival, as well as the Thin Line Award at the Thin Line Film Festival, before its premiere in 2011. It elicited such a strong reaction then and in the months that followed that Wurzweiler decided to revisit it as a potentially critical component of the social work curriculum, focusing on its unique ability to help students better understand the many forms bullying often takes among children and teens today and empathize with the emotions and motivations of victims after witnessing a firsthand account. Read the rest of this entry…
Wurzweiler Students Turn Focus Inward at Self-Care Day
On December 12, students at Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work learned a few techniques to treat some of their most important clients: themselves.
“Because of the kind of work social workers do every day, it is very important that they put aside time to take care of themselves,” said Dr. Carmen Ortiz Hendricks, the Dorothy and David I. Schachne Dean of Wurzweiler. “Vicarious traumatization can occur when a social worker takes in the clients’ experiences and it begins to affect their lives. Finding ways to relax, socialize, exercise, and have fun is essential to a healthy mind, body and spirit. Today was Wurzweiler’s way of helping students and faculty take care of themselves.”
Wurzweiler’s New Certificate Program Provides Professional Training in Jewish Philanthropy
Change. Meaning. Opportunity. Mitzvah.
In a classroom at Yeshiva University’s Beren Campus on a recent Wednesday night, these were a few of the words 20 professionals used to describe the passion that drove them to pursue Jewish communal work and ultimately, to enroll in a new Certificate Program in Jewish Philanthropy at YU’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work.
Andrea Wasserman shares a presentation on “The Culture of Philanthropy” with Certificate Program students.
“Remember that passion and those values and bring them to work with you,” guest lecturer Andrea Wasserman, a philanthropic and organizational development strategist, told students. “What we’re doing boils down to so much more than a financial transaction. We’re fostering partnerships that make the world a better place by helping your missions thrive.”
As Jewish causes face more fundraising challenges than ever before—including increased competition both within the Jewish world and with other nonprofits and donors hit hard by the economic recession—Wurzweiler launched the new Certificate Program to provide talented Jewish communal professionals with the tools they need to succeed in the modern philanthropic arena. Read the rest of this entry…
“The quality of the faculty at Yeshiva meets its academic and civilizational aspirations,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “The scholars who now comprise the faculty of this University bring the elegance of thought, the rigor of research and the commitment of service that can serve as a model to all of our students.” Read the rest of this entry…
Rather than lead a congregation, Linzer wanted to pursue a career in Jewish communal work. So he turned to YU’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work, which had opened its doors the year before, to pursue a degree that would equip him with all the right tools to accomplish his dream.
“I am constantly reminded that people go into the field of psychology because they want to build civilization, they want to explore ideas and they’re wise enough to know that they don’t want to live in an enclosed bubble,” said YU President Richard M. Joel in his opening remarks to students. “They want to break down silos, bring their disciplines to play with other disciplines and inspire young people to explore their dreams and make those dreams come true.”