By: Josh Teller  | 

From the President’s Desk: A Year in Reflection

Crazy how fast time goes by. It feels like only yesterday I was running around campus trying to hustle my way to as many votes possible to win the position of Syms President. Now a year later, looking at the current candidates running for the position for the next academic year, it is nice to reflect on the extremely busy, yet rewarding year I had being Syms Student Council President.

When I was elected, I was extremely eager and delighted to hold such an important and influential position, although at the time I was not prepared for the amount of work or responsibilities that was expected of me in this role. It is humbling to look back at the year and to see all that Syms as a whole has accomplished. This year, the club heads went above and beyond planning numerous site visits, lectures and panels. We have been fortunate enough to meet and hear from established professionals and partake in site visits to places such as Park South Hotel, Mr. Broadway, Grant-Thorton, Ernst & Young, and The New World Trade Center. These site visits helped offer motivation for entering the workforce as an Orthodox Jew, and highlight that being an Orthodox Jew in the workplace is relevant and possible. What is so special about Syms is that the school really teaches us how to excel in the business world while getting a great understanding of the potential issues and circumstances you might run into once you leave Yeshiva University.

The Syms Student Council, together with the Deans and faculty, have worked hard to achieve our goal of offering students the unique opportunity to learn outside of the classroom and begin preparing for their careers after they graduate. To maximize as many opportunities as possible, we utilize our various clubs lead by the student body. We have over 15 different types of clubs that specialize in targeting the different interests and needs of the Syms student body. These clubs cover an array of topics such as the Accounting Society and the Marketing Club to TAMID and the Business Leadership Club. The clubs run events to educate the students on things that may not be covered in the classroom and include professionals who speak about various topics and present networking opportunities for the students. These events allow our students to broaden their interests, and experience what their work may look like in the future.

Working alongside Alexa Ratner, Syms Student Council President on the Beren Campus, we were able to complete many of our goals of changing certain aspects of the Syms community throughout the year. Whether it was bringing in new clubs that would be more beneficial to the diverse student body, or encouraging more site visits and networking opportunities, the many hours we spent throughout the year have definitely paid off.

Being that the Syms Dinner is always the highlight of the year, Alexa and I wanted to make this year’s Dinner on April 14th something special and memorable. Thanks to all the students, parents, and faculty for their support and encouragement, this year’s dinner was the largest in history with over 300 participants. From the location to the caterer, as well as the order of the evening, we completely revamped the traditional Dinner. We started planning for the dinner back in August and after numerous meetings, email exchanges, and phone calls it was magnificent to watch how everything played out.

Looking down the road, I see Syms heading in an extremely positive direction. Enrollment is larger than ever and the amount of students landing jobs in Big 4 Accounting firms, Bulge Bracket Banks, Real Estate and Marketing firms is unbelievable, and the success students are having here is only going to grow. As stated above, all of these amazing accomplishments are largely due to the amazing work of the student body. There are so many useful events on campus that are run by the students for the students. The Syms community is something everyone should be proud of.

To the next President of Syms: enjoy every minute of it. There are going to be things that frustrate you and make you upset, but remember that you are in a position that you should not take for granted. You are in a position that enables you to make a strong impact on a Business School and a large student body. You are going to be working hard and vigorously all year, but once it is all over you are going to look back at all that you have achieved and be extremely proud. Leave your mark.

One of the reasons I decided to run for President was because I felt that my first two years at Yeshiva University flew by, and I did not feel that I made any impact on the school. I felt an urge to make a difference at YU. I felt that I wanted to walk out these doors after I graduate and tell myself that I left a mark on YU and that I was a contributor to this great institution. At times the role is extremely frustrating. Working with numerous people with different personalities and ideas is not always the easiest. But being in this position has taught me so much about responsibility and leadership. This role has helped shape me as a leader and has given me the practical skills that I will be able to take with me into the workplace. I am extremely thankful for the opportunity I was given, and am grateful for the relationships that I have built over my time at Yeshiva University.