I’ve promised to keep you apprised of significant developments as we continue the important work of building a sustainable Yeshiva University for generations to come.
A number of positive initiatives are underway, but I am writing to you primarily to report that the University has just entered into an agreement to sell 10 residential properties in close proximity to our Wilf Campus in Washington Heights. This sale delivers a tremendous return on the University’s original investment and provides an infusion of cash that will be used to strengthen our financial position and enhance our ability to invest in our core objective: delivering an unmatched educational experience for our students.
Yeshiva University has been a presence in Washington Heights for almost a century and we couldn’t be prouder to call this vibrant neighborhood our home. YU’s purchase of the buildings seven years ago was intended to enhance our presence here and to benefit all of Washington Heights, a neighborhood whose diversity makes it so exceptional. That objective has been achieved, and the buyer respects what we have built around Wilf Campus and shares our commitment to preserve the special flavor of the community.
YU is doing great things throughout our campuses and our momentum is building on many fronts as we do the hard work necessary to strengthen our financial position and prepare our pathway forward. We are making important progress in addressing our challenges, including the real estate announcement made today, and there is more to come.
Our Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary is preparing to celebrate its largest-ever class at the Chag HaSemikhah on March 23. Our undergraduate enrollment numbers and applications are very strong. And our students continue to make an impact in the classroom, in the lab, in the beit midrash, in a dizzying array of student activities and athletics, and in social action programs around the world. I couldn’t be more enthusiastic about what our current students across our schools and campuses are going to contribute to the world once they conclude their educational experiences at YU.
There is much more work to do and we will still encounter difficult times along the way. But let us keep our sights on the many strengths and achievements that define our University and inspire us to confront the challenges of the 21st century and emerge better than before.
I look forward to sharing more updates with you.
Richard M. Joel
President and Bravmann Family University Professor