During an exciting opening Shabbos dinner of the fall semester 24 years ago, two freshmen, whom we’ll call Molly and Susan, introduced themselves and asked if they could stop by my office one day during the week. A common request seemingly to fine-tune their orientation to Jewish life on campus,
The importance of leadership in government, business, and every facet of society cannot be overstated. The shelves of our bookstores are stacked with advice on how to become an effective leader. Everyone expects only the highest standards from our leaders. What are the criteria for Jewish leadership? In Parshat Shemot, God chooses Moshe Rebeinu to... Read more »

HaRav Yitzhak (Isadore) Twersky’s zt”l (The Talner Rebbi) recent sefer, Torah of the Mind, Torah of the Heart [1], presents the Chasam Sofer’s striking contrast between Chanuch and Avraham Avinu and the implications for every Jew. Rashi (Bereishis 5:24) cites Bereishis Rabba to explain Chanuch’s premature death because he vacillated between righteous and evil behavior,... Read more »

The social scientist, Professor Peter Burke, defines “identity” as the qualities, beliefs, personality traits, appearance, and/or expressions that characterize a person (Wikipedia, The Cambridge Handbook of Social Theory). When we think of who we are at our core, we have many composites – what we think, read, say, watch and do; our cultural heritage – family,... Read more »

In New York City’s Rockefeller Center in Manhattan, a private street called Rockefeller Plaza is situated between the RCA Building and the sunken skating rink. In order to preserve Rockefeller Center’s right of ownership of the street, each year the street is closed to all traffic, even pedestrian, for one day – a Sunday in... Read more »

Katie Roiphe is a Harvard and Princeton educated professor and author directing the graduate journalism Cultural Reporting and Criticism program at NYU. In an essay in Atlantic Magazine’s August 2021 edition, 16 Things to Remember at College, Dr. Roiphe offers advice to her college freshman daughter that she wished someone had given her.  “Over the... Read more »

On May 7, 2016 a test-driver of a driverless Telsa was killed when neither he nor the car’s auto sensing system were able to avert a large white 18-wheel truck and trailer travelling in the opposite direction making a left turn across his lane on the highway. According to police reports, the car drove under the trailer knocking off the