View from YU: Sept. 17, 2021

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From the President

My Dear Friends,

Welcome to all our students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends who have been back in person since the beginning of the fall semester. This season on the Jewish calendar is infused with the spirit of renewal, and that is the spirit at Yeshiva University today. From the classrooms to the dorm rooms, in the solemn spaces we pray and in the open places we play, our university is up and running and filled with joy. Our campus is buzzing again, and we are deeply thankful for it.

One of the blessings of this past year has been the way our university community, with our values as our compass, has come together as one for a common cause and purpose. The start of this fall semester is a testament to how diligently our administrators, faculty, students and lay leaders have worked to make our university emerge even stronger and more resilient.

In this issue of the View From YU, you will see how the different schools and divisions of YU are all working toward the same goal of infusing our students with the values, knowledge and competencies for enormous personal and professional success in their futures. Yeshiva University, the flagship Jewish university, inspires each of its students to become a person of impact and a leader of tomorrow.

I thank each of you for being a part of this great story, and I look forward to a great and memorable semester ahead.

Warmest regards,

Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman, President of Yeshiva University

Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman greets YU students during Orientation Week.

YU Deans welcome back students: Dr. Karen Bacon, The Mordecai D. Katz and Dr. Monique C. Katz Dean of the Undergraduate Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Yeshiva University; Dr. Noam Wasserman, Dean, Sy Syms School of Business; Dr. Paul Russo, Dean and Vice Provost, Katz School of Science and Health.



A Welcome Return to Our Campuses

During orientation week, there were plenty of opportunities to reconnect or get acquainted. Students found camaraderie with classmates at the orientation dinner, an evening boat cruise and a welcome-back barbecue; learned more about YU facilities and resources on campus tours; and paused for spiritual connection at campus shiurim [lectures]. Orientation week ended on a note of gratitude and a nod to community spirit as student volunteers engaged in a variety of chessed activities from sending kosher care packages to American troops to a park cleanup.

Ready to begin an engaging semester of learning, the graduate schools welcomed back their students as well. Of special note was Cardozo Law School’s in-person orientation for its class of 2024 on Aug. 16 followed by a festive cruise on the Hudson River. (The LL.M. class of 2022 met on Aug. 11.) On Aug. 23, new students at the Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology heard from Dean Leslie Halpern and toured the campus and the Parnes Clinic.


Student Leadership Shabbaton

From Aug. 20–21, Camp Dora Golding in the Poconos was the site of an inspiring Shabbaton for over 100 YU student leaders, resident advisers, student guides and University administrators from the Wilf and Beren campuses. Among those attending was Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman. Rabbi Beny Rofeh of Isaac Breuer College conducted workshops on leadership challenges, and David Linn, aka the Gratitude Guy, explored the power of hakarat ha-tov [gratitude].


Highbridge Park Cleanup

On Aug. 25, student volunteers from the Wilf and Beren campuses brought some TLC to Highbridge Park in Washington Heights. Armed with rakes, garbage bags and enthusiasm to spare, the group joined forces with the Northern Manhattan Division of NYC Parks in the first of three park cleanups scheduled for the fall semester. New York State Assemblymember Carmen De La Rosa was on hand, commending the group for its commitment to the community and the environment. READ MORE

Summer Retrospect

From June through August, our undergrads took on new challenges and opportunities through a wide variety of experiential learning—internships, community activism, research and more. READ MORE


Counterpoint Israel

Through the month of July, Counterpoint Israel ran its learning initiative program in Lod, a mixed Jewish-Arab city. Eighteen YU student counselors mentored over 400 Jewish, Arab and Christian youth through a mix of English language instruction and recreational workshops. READ MORE


YU-Orthodox Union Consulting Force

Organized by Dr. Noam Wasserman, dean of Sy Syms, 21 students enrolled in this intensive nine-week summer internship program in business management consulting. After being coached by top-tier consulting firms, they then transitioned into client projects at nonprofits and startups.


Internship Initiative at YU Israel

Ten YU students connected with high-tech startups for eight weeks of on-the-job learning, thanks to the Shevet Glaubach Center for Career Strategy and Professional Development, MassChallenge Israel (a startup incubator) and YU Israel’s Alumni Affairs. Coaching and mentoring sessions helped students fine-tune their time- and project-management skills.


Science Research Internships at Bar-Ilan University

Since 2011, students from Yeshiva College and Stern College have participated in summer science projects at Bar-Ilan University in Israel. This summer, 20 researchers-in-training interned for seven weeks in Life Sciences, Brain Research, Exact Sciences and Engineering, assisting with ongoing research initiatives.


Ongoing Archaeological Fieldwork at Tell es-Safi/Gath Israel

This summer, YU students, under the supervision of Dr. Jill Katz, clinical professor of archaeology at Stern College, joined an international team of archaeologists to continue the excavation of Tell es-Safi/Gath in Israel.


Bringing Science Home

For Dr. Ran Drori, sharing scientific knowledge is not limited to the classroom. Passionate about building scientific awareness at large, the assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry at YU took his mission to his neighbors this summer by organizing “Science on the Terrace,” an evening lecture series for the residents of his New York City co-op. The popular talks explored topics from vaccines to Alzheimer’s disease. READ MORE

New & Noteworthy

New Program Directors Take the Helm

Sivan Tehila, director of the cybersecurity master’s programs for the Katz School, comes from a long intelligence and cybersecurity career in both government and the private sector. She founded Cyber Ladies NYC, dedicated to promoting women in cybersecurity. READ MORE

Dr. Julie Kardachi, director of the Occupational Therapy Doctorate program at the Katz School, has worked with clients of every age over her career to increase their mobility, maintain their functional independence and recover from neurological injuries. READ MORE

Kimberly Moore, Wurzweiler’s Care Café director, is also a student in the school’s Ph.D. program. With a background in criminal justice and addiction counseling, she has worked for decades with populations to empower them to be their own advocates. READ MORE

Jeffrey Trey, director of the M.S. in Taxation at Sy Syms (where he has also taught), brings over two decades of experience in the industry to the position, having worked in such firms as Pricewaterhouse-Coopers, Citigroup, and Brix & Partners LLC.

Revel Makes the Atlantic Crossing

The Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies has signed an agreement with the London School of Jewish Studies to offer students in the U.K. the opportunity to study remotely for a Revel graduate degree. READ MORE


Covid-19 and Chinuch: Second Volume Published

The Azrieli Graduate School has announced the publication of the second volume of Covid-19 & Chinuch. This new volume examines the recruitment of professionals during a pandemic, mental health issues in schools and financial structures in day-school education. READ MORE


Taking the Bronze

A team of intrepid contestants from the Sy Syms School of Business—David Schmidt (’21SB), Ariel Schneider (’22SB), Alexander Wildes (’21SB), and Gabriel Miller (’21SB)—placed third out of more than 340 submissions and seven finalists in the Shared Value Challenge, an international contest hosted by the Bengis Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Their submission, an app named “Eat IT,” was intended to eliminate the intense food waste dilemma many wealthy countries face and help save families money while simultaneously removing 6% to 7% of greenhouse gases emitted yearly. Their idea for the app originated from their work in Dr. Tamar Avnet’s Marketing capstone class. READ MORE


Upcoming Events

Visit for more information on YU programming. PLEASE NOTE: Events may be subject to change as we continue to monitor CDC guidelines, city and state regulations and recommended best practices, based on the current public health situation.

  • YU YOUNG ALUMNI COUNCIL NETWORKING • Thursday, October 14 / 8 – 10 p.m.
  • 50th YEAR CLASS REUNION • Yeshiva College & Stern College •Sunday, October 17 / 1 – 3 p.m.
  • CHAG HaSEMIKHAH • Sunday, October 31 / 1 p.m.
  • WOMEN’S OPEN HOUSE • Sunday, November 14 / 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Beren Campus)
  • MEN’S OPEN HOUSE • Sunday, November 21 / 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Wilf Campus)
  • 97th ANNUAL HANUKKAH DINNER • Sunday, December 5


Reopening of YU Museum Exhibition

The YU Museum has reopened From A(gam) to Z(aritsky): Highlights of Israeli Art from YU Museum’s Collection for in-person viewing. Featured are founding masters of Israeli art such as Boris Schatz, Reuven Rubin and Moshe Tamir as well as works by more recent artists including Michael Gross, Max Ferguson and Debbie Ampel. For additional information, visit YU Museum.