View from YU December 2022

2022 DEC

Message From The President

My Dear Friends, Students and Colleagues,

As we head into winter, with its shorter days and longer nights, we also look toward the light of Hanukkah. Hanukkah celebrates our human capacity to spread light, and that is the very essence of YU, the flagship Jewish university. In all our metrics — national rankings, student enrollment, cutting-edge academic programs and the career accomplishments of our graduates — Yeshiva University is on the rise. You will see meaningful expressions of this growth in this edition of the View from YU , all shaped by our Core Torah Values: showcasing Torat Adam, students are learning the art of business communications through a new curriculum at Sy Syms; embodying the value of Torat Chesed, Stern College for Women has helped a top scholar from Afghanistan find a new intellectual home; Torat Emet was demonstrated by Katz School students in their scientific research which revealed new truths in the area of climate change and forest fires; exemplifying Torat Chaim, philanthropist Anita Zucker donated $5 million toward Jewish education scholarships at YU; and YU hosted a decorated IDF colonel for an inspirational Shabbaton, expressing Torat Tzion — the light of redemption.

Our brightest candles are our students and they continue to spread light and joy throughout our communities and in our broader society.

Wishing you much continued success, a joyous holiday season and a winter filled with light.

Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman President, Yeshiva University

Torat Chaim / Live Your Values

Former U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman at this year’s Hanukkah Dinner

(l-r): Shulem Lemmer and Chris Norton

Yeshiva University Raises $100 Million Hanukkah Dinner Celebrates Rise Up Campaign Which Now Stands at $350 million Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman, President of Yeshiva University, announced record success in the first year of Rise Up: The Campaign for 613. Last year at this time, the Rise Up campaign, which has a goal of raising $613 million over five years, was launched with private-stage funding at $250 million. With an additional $100 million raised this year, the campaign has passed its half-way mark and now stands at $350 million. The announcement was made in a packed room of over 500 friends and supporters of Yeshiva University at its 98th Annual Hanukkah Dinner on December 4th. The dinner committee included YU leaders from across the country, with Ingeborg and Ira Rennert serving as Honorary Chairs, and Anita Zucker and Senator Joseph Lieberman as Dinner Chairs. READ MORE

Zucker Gift Launches Program for Jewish Early Childhood Educators

Dr. Efraim Zuroff Speaks at Kristallnacht Commemoration To mark the 84th anniversary of Kristall- nacht, the Emil A. and Jenny Fish Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies offered a compelling lecture on the subject of Holocaust distortion in Eastern Europe with guest lecturer Dr. Efraim Zuroff, holocaust historian and director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Jerusalem. READ MORE

YU has announced a $5 million gift from philanthropist Anita Zucker of Charleston, South Carolina, to establish the Anita Zucker Program for Jewish Early Childhood Educators. Provid- ing scholarships for

undergraduates wishing to pursue careers in Jewish early childhood education, the gift will also fund the establishment of a peer- reviewed annual journal on early childhood Jewish education, sponsor students to the NAEYC Annual Conference, and further research conducted by YU research fellows from YU graduate schools. READ MORE

Wurzweiler’s Award Winners The 2022 Latino Social Work Coalition & Scholar- ship Annual Leadership Gala recognized two of Wurzweiler’s rising stars. Dr. Evelyn Fernandez- Ketchum, adjunct instructor and field adviser, received the Social Work Advocate of the Year Award for her commitment to her students and the Latinx community. Karina Estrella, an MSW student, was awarded the Latino Social Work Coalition Scholarship for 2022–2023 academic year. READ MORE

(l-r): Eric Grossman, Evelyn Fernandez- Ketcham, Malik Ketcham and Carolina Herrera

Torat Tzion / Bring Redemption

YU Hosts IDF Col. Golan Vach YU’s Undergraduate Torah Studies (UTS) hosted IDF Col. Golan Vach, head of Israel’s Elite Search and Rescue Unit, for an inspira- tional Shabbaton attended by more than 100 students. Vach discussed the life-changing impact careers in public service and humani- tarian work can have and shared stories of the many rescue missions he has led globally, including responding to the Surfside condo- minium collapse in Florida. READ MORE

The First-Ever “In the Heights” Shabbaton From Dec. 2 -3, students gathered for a UTS Shabbaton filled with learning, prayer and an appreciation of Washington Heights history. On Friday night, students enjoyed a Shabbos meal at local homes, then partici- pated in a tisch hosted by the Dombrover Rebbe at the Dombrover Shteibel. A Saturday luncheon with YU’s Rav Schachter high- lighted the colorful history of the Heights’ KAJ congregation. Later in the day at the Mount Sinai Jewish Center, volunteers from hatzolah shared stories of community service.

Students Dance with Col. Golan Vach (center) during Melava Malka

Torat Adam / Discover Your Potential

Breakthrough Success for Men’s Soccer It was a thrilling season for the men’s soccer team as the Maccabees, for the first time in program history, advanced all the way to the Skyline Conference Championship match after winning a pair of road conference playoff contests. Capping off the historic season, six YU players were named to the All-Skyline team. READ MORE

Torat Adam / Discover Your Potential

Careers in Innovation Are careers in technology innovation the purview of startups or can they be found at large financial institutions as well? That was the topic of discussion at the latest installment of the Innovation Lab’s new “Innovation Conversations” series. Bank of America executives Alla Pilster, managing director of the Cloud & Advanced Technology Group, and Will Kawalek, Sr. VP of Technol- ogy Partnership & Business Development, discussed their paths to professional success, giving students a new appreciation of how business innovation works in traditional financial services.

Prof. Marc Spear (center) with Sy Syms students

Communicating Like a Pro This fall, the Sy Syms School of Business introduced a new business communications curriculum that takes the best of classroom practices and integrates them with proven corporate training techniques to make stu- dents workplace- and career-ready. Revamped from the ground up, the new curriculum comes at a time when communication expertise is one of the key qualifications employers look for when hiring. READ MORE

(l-r): Will Kawalek, Alla Pilster, Dr. Maria Blekher (YU Innovation Lab)

Torat Emet / Seek Truth

Understanding Climate Change

YU Historian Explores the Legacy of a Polish Patriot

Katz Leaders Speak at Global Cybertech Summit Dr. Paul Russo, dean of the Katz School and vice provost, and Sivan Tehila, director of the Katz School’s cybersecurity master’s programs, were panelists on Nov. 16-17 at Cybertech NYC, an international summit featuring thought leaders in the cyber industry. Dr. Russo and Tehila offered their expertise and insights on a variety of topics, from cyber intelligence to the growing role of women in cybertech.

Katz School graduate students have built a machine learning model that

On Nov. 21, Revel Grad- uate School hosted a book talk with Dr. Joshua Zimmerman

on his latest work, Jozef Pilsudski: Founding Father of Modern Poland . In a fascinating exploration of this historical figure, Dr. Zimmerman explored the complex reputation of the 20th-century leader who supported an independent Ukraine and advocated for the protection of Jewish and other minorities. READ MORE

utilizes satellite images to refine climate change fore- casts which are important for managing corporate assets. Focusing their work on areas in Northern California affected by wildfire, the student team was advised by Dr. Yuri Katz, a Katz faculty member and senior director of data science at S&P Global Market Intelligence. READ MORE

Upcoming Events

Visit to learn more about the programs listed here.

Stern College Dramatics Society Presents The Mousetrap Wednesday, Dec. 14 Thursday, Dec. 15 7:30 – 10 p.m. Schottenstein Center Theatre Wilf Campus Shloshim Kinus In commemoration of the shloshim of Tobias (Teddy) Berman, Z”L

UTS Chanukah Mesiba Monday, Dec. 19 / 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Curator’s Tour of From A(gam) to Z(aritsky) Tuesday, Dec. 27 2 – 3 p.m. YU Museum at the Center for Jewish History 15 W. 16th St., New York MTA High School Dinner Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2023 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. Central High School Dinner Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2023 6:30 – 9:30 p.m.

103 Weissberg Commons Belfer Hall, Wilf Campus

Chanukah Chagiga Monday, Dec. 19 7 – 9 p.m. Beren Campus

Chanukah Concert for Holocaust Survivors Tuesday, Dec. 20 / 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Schick’s Manor 4901 12th Ave., Brooklyn American Dream Chanukah Takeover Tuesday, Dec. 20 / 7 – 10 p.m.

Sunday, Dec. 18 10:15 – 11 a.m. Glueck Beit Midrash Wilf Campus Streamed live at

American Dream Mall East Rutherford, NJ

Torat Chesed / Act with Compassion

Afghan Scholar Finds Refuge at YU Dr. Mariam Ahmady, the former chair of the counseling psychology department, psychology and educational sciences at Kabul University, has left Afghanistan and found refuge at Yeshiva University. Having arrived in New York in early November after an arduous departure from her home country, Dr. Ahmady will teach classes at Stern College for Women as a visiting professor. READ MORE Bikur Cholim Brigade to the Rescue Know someone who’s sick? Reach out to YU’s newly formed, student-run Bikur Cholim Brigade for a care package or meal delivered directly to a sick student’s dorm room. Information on campus

Thanksgiving at the Goldbergs’ House On Thanksgiving, Dr. Scott Goldberg, the Golda Koschitzky Chair in Jewish Education at the Azrieli Graduate School of Education and Administration, and his family graciously opened their dining room to YU students unable to travel home for the holiday. For the Goldbergs, a YU Thanksgiving at their home in Passaic, New Jersey, has become an eagerly anticipated tradition. This year, the family served a turkey dinner with all the fixings to 40 students.

health resources also will be provided. For more information or to volunteer for the Brigade, visit

YU students share Thanksgiving with Dr. Scott Goldberg’s family.

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