Dean Karen Bacon to Lead Combined YC and Stern Faculty While Schools Remain Separate
Yeshiva University recently announced that it will unify the undergraduate faculties at Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women as part of its effort to improve student education and create efficiencies. The campuses and classes remain separate, while the faculty combines its resources. Dr. Karen Bacon will serve as the inaugural Dr. Monique C. Katz Dean of the Undergraduate Faculty of Arts and Science at YU.
Dr. Karen Bacon will lead a unified Yeshiva College and Stern College for Women faculty.
“The faculty, individually and collectively, are the lifeblood of this critical institution and we will now advance to right-size the administrative parts of the university,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “For several years, we have been discussing the need for a more unified undergraduate faculty of arts and science. Dean Bacon is a valued educator of integrity and has served with distinction in the highest levels of academic leadership—I look to her and all our faculty to continue to exercise their prerogative in shaping what is a fine curriculum still further.”
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Neal’s Fund Helps Student Entrepreneurs Create Startups That Give Back
While all entrepreneurs and startups begin with a good idea, most are also driven by the bottom line. But at Yeshiva University, a new fund is enabling students to apply that hybrid of inspired innovation and business acumen to endeavors that seek to make a difference, not a profit.
Gabriel Simkin, left, and Daniel Benchimol, right, are student entrepreneurs whose startups received grants from Neal’s Fund.
Called Neal’s Fund and established in memory of Neal Dublinsky ’84YC, the fund provides micro-grants to student social entrepreneurs founding startups that will benefit the broader Jewish and global communities.
Dublinsky grew up in Queens, New York, and graduated with honors from Yeshiva College before attending the New York University School of Law. In 1987, at the age of 24, he was diagnosed with advanced stage of lymphoma, just as he was beginning his career as a corporate attorney in Los Angeles, California. Despite medical setbacks, Dublinsky fought his illness and succeeded in living a full life for another 23 years, often providing support based on his own experiences to others struggling with cancer.
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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.”
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On Center for the Jewish Future Missions, Students Help Haiti and Explore American Jewish Communities
Over a whirlwind eight days, 36 Yeshiva University students took part in a humanitarian aid mission to Haiti and actively participated in the inner workings of small Jewish communities across the United States as part of two winter service learning programs organized by YU’s Center for the Jewish Future (CJF). The undergraduates signed on to expand their educational horizons through the missions, from January 10-18, with one group of 15 students on the JDC (American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee) Insider’s Trip to Haiti and another group of 21 on Jewish Life Coast to Coast.
Michal Segall, a participant on the mission to Haiti, teaches songs to students at the Prodev school in the town of Zoranje.
“For some, winter break is a chance to relax and reenergize before the beginning of a new semester,” said Rabbi Yaakov Glasser, David Mitzner Dean of CJF. “But for these students it was a life-transforming experience that instilled a deep commitment to the broader Jewish community and the world.” Read the rest of this entry…
Revel Student’s Research Examines Daily Legalities of Biblical Life Through a Comparative Lens
Judaism relies heavily on its legal library: written discussions of the law are almost synonymous with the religion, describing practices that date back to the beginnings of the Bible and beyond. But what did those practices actually look like in the day-to-day lives of ancient Israelites? Like many civilizations of the time, the Jews of the biblical era used papyrus for everyday business affairs; few artifacts from the era survive to illustrate how the rules and regulations found in the canonical Torah were observed.
For Yael Landman Wermuth, a doctoral student at Yeshiva University’s Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, the key to understanding these texts lies not so much in the history of ancient Jews, but in that of their neighbors.
Landman Wermuth’s doctoral thesis examines areas of biblical law through a comparative lens, drawing on examples from the contemporary Mesopotamian and Hittite law codes, which contain many similarities to that of the Bible, as well as ancient Near Eastern contracts, letters, trial records and other documents that offer a glimpse of legal practice in everyday Mesopotamian life. Read the rest of this entry…
Students, Faculty and Alumni Honored as Points of Light at Hanukkah Dinner
Students, faculty and alumni who embody the mission of Yeshiva University were recognized as “Points of Light” during the dinner portion of Yeshiva University’s 90th Annual Hanukkah Dinner and Convocation, held at New York City’s Waldorf-Astoria on December 14.
“The lesson of Hanukkah is that the Jewish people must cast the light of our values onto the world,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “Tonight, we publicize the lights that represent the past, present, and future of Yeshiva University.”
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Yeshiva University Celebrates Rabbi Dr. Bernard Rosensweig’s 38 Years of Dedicated Service
After 38 years of molding students’ minds and expanding their Torah horizons at Yeshiva College, Rabbi Dr. Bernard Rosensweig, visiting professor of Jewish history, literature and philosophy at Yeshiva University, will be retiring at the end of this semester. On Thursday, December 11, some 100 friends, relatives and colleagues came to pay tribute and celebrate the beloved educator’s career at a reception held at Weisberg Commons on the Wilf Campus.
“Rabbi Dr. Rosensweig has touched thousands of talmidim [students] with his warmth, wisdom, wit and passion for Jewish history and the Jewish community,” said Rabbi Menachem Penner, Max and Marion Grill Dean of Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS) and Undergraduate Torah Studies. “He is beloved by students and colleagues. I, myself, was a talmid several decades ago, and have never ceased being a talmid.” Read the rest of this entry…
Yeshiva College Hebrew Instructor Places First in 2014 U.S. National Bible Contest
Yair Shahak, Hebrew instructor at Yeshiva College, was crowned the winner of the 2014 United States National Bible Contest for Adults on Sunday, November 30 in New York City.
Yair Shahak will represent the U.S. at the upcoming International Chidon HaTanach.
Shahak, a graduate of Yeshiva College and the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies and a current student at the Belz School of Jewish Music, persevered against 12 talented challengers to claim the first place spot and the opportunity to represent the United States at the International Chidon HaTanach (Bible Contest) for Adults in Jerusalem on December 23, 2014.
“This victory means a great deal to me because I have been involved in Bible study all my life,” said Shahak, a native of Brooklyn, New York. “It was a very emotional win, as I felt as though I was coming full circle while battling it out against some very capable Bible scholars. I fell in love with the stories and language of the Bible at a young age, and there is still nothing that gives me more joy than sharing my love of the Bible with my students at Yeshiva University.” Read the rest of this entry…
Yeshiva College Research Team Publishes Findings on Protein Structure in Leading Crystallography Journal
A research team led by physics professors Dr. Neer Asherie and Dr. Sergey Buldyrev discovered a new way to control the crystallization of proteins so that researchers can more easily determine a protein’s 3D structure. These findings were published in Acta Crystallographica D, a leading crystallography journal. The paper was co-authored by five former and current Yeshiva College students.
Dr. Neer Asherie
The team, which includes Dr. Bruce Hrnjez at Collegiate School and Dr. Jean Jakoncic at Brookhaven National Laboratory, discovered that adding a specific class of small molecules to water solutions of proteins not only induces the proteins to crystallize, but can also control the type of crystal formed.
“Protein crystals are used to figure out the structure and function of proteins, which is important for understanding certain diseases and for drug development,” said Asherie. “However, proteins are difficult to crystallize. Our research suggests a new way to control protein crystallization and – we hope – increase the success rate of making crystals. The results are new and lay a fertile ground for future studies. ”
The article describes several years of work, to which both past and current YU students contributed by carrying out experiments, simulations and data analysis. Read the rest of this entry…
Fine and Holz Appointed Endowed Chairs; Shatz Named University Professor
In recognition of their outstanding achievements, Yeshiva University recently honored two faculty members at Stern College for Women and one at Yeshiva College.
At Stern College, Dr. Marina Holz has been named the Doris and Ira Kukin Chair in Biology and Dr. David Shatz has been appointed University Professor of Philosophy, Ethics and Religious Thought. Dr. Steven Fine has been named the Dean Pinkhos Churgin Chair in Jewish History at Yeshiva College.
“Each of these individuals is a leader and an innovator whose work advances education and research at Yeshiva University,” said Dr. Selma Botman, vice president for academic affairs and provost at YU. “We recognize their accomplishments with the highest honors the University bestows: named chairs and a University professorship. David, Marina, and Steve represent for students and their colleagues what is worthy and noble about the life of the mind. The advances they have made in science and the humanities come through dedicated and tireless work, relentless focus and the joy that new knowledge brings.”
Dr. Marina Holz
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