By: Deborah Coopersmith  | 

We Asked, Y(O)U Answered: A+ Professors

The coronavirus pandemic has been a difficult time for professors and students alike. YU professors quickly adapted and rose to the challenge by navigating through technological, interpersonal and Zoom-burnout difficulties. This article highlights only a few of these professors who had a profound impact on their students. Due to the personal nature of these entries, some have chosen to remain anonymous. The responses of seven students are provided below.

Noa Berman (SCW ‘23)

Major: Biology

Professor/Course: Dr. Daniel Hengel, English Comp.

“Dr. Hengel is a professor who really cares about helping every student grow at their own pace. I found him to be extremely kind and understanding. He is always very willing to listen to students’ concerns and adjust the course accordingly.

“One day we were discussing a sensitive topic that I had previously written about in an assignment. He asked me to stay after class and simply asked if I was okay after that day’s discussion. I was fine, but his sensitivity was incredibly touching.”

Yair Shavrick (YC ’21)

Major: Psychology

Professor/Course: Dr. David Lavinsky, Global Shakespeare

“Through the elegant dissection of Shakespearian texts, Dr. Lavinsky inspired me as a professor, individual and academic. He displayed professionalism to the highest degree, showed a mastery of the literature and had the attention of the entire class in the palm of his hand. He is a professor worth taking over and over, as he is compassionate, educated, scholarly, refined, honorable, well-mannered and put-together.”

Anonymous (YC ‘23)

Major: Psychology

Professor/Course: Dr. Jenny Isaacs

“Dr. Isaacs is a passionate professor on top of being a kindhearted, supportive person.

“Dr. Isaacs ran the Being LGBTQ in an Orthodox World Panel this past December and took her time to explain to my class how important it was that we attend. As a closeted gay student in her class, I immediately felt safer and seen knowing that here was a professor who I could talk to and get support.”

Mitch Goulson (Sy Syms ‘23)

Major: Accounting

Professor/Course: Rabbi Simcha Willig, Ethics

“Rabbi Willig is a great person who is kind, generous, funny, and caring, and a good teacher.

“As I was going through a tough time, Rabbi Willig constantly checked up on me. He made sure I was handling it well and staying healthy. He even brought me cookies on Erev Shabbos, which was the first time I met him in person.”

Anonymous (YC ‘21)

Major: Finance

Professor/Course: Prof. Brian Trimboli, First Year Writing

“Professor Trimboli inspired me because he was genuinely teaching to make us more successful people. It was obvious that he cared about every student and did everything he could to help us succeed. He was a great teacher, but even more than that, he truly cared about his students. He would space out his assignments so that they wouldn’t coincide with midterms and overwhelm us. He would stay incredibly late on campus for people who needed office hours. I remember one time he had brought some non-kosher food to eat, and before class he checked with us to make sure that it was not disrespectful to our religious beliefs for him to eat that food in front of us. That respect and sensitivity he showed us is something that I will never forget.”

Jonah Goldstein (Makor ‘21)

Major: Culinary

Professor/Course: Dr. Stephen Glicksman, Psychology 

“Dr. Glicksman is kind, helpful and encouraged me to keep learning psychology with him. He made me want to learn more. I like him and he’s the best professor.”

Yael Evgi (SCW ‘21)

Major: Political Science

Professor/Course: Dr. Jonathan Cristol, Weapons of Mass Destruction

“Besides for his interesting and thought-provoking lectures, Professor Cristol is one of the most understanding and attentive professors I’ve had in Stern College. When I had COVID in early March 2020, he was so caring and helpful regarding the assignments I had due. 

“He is incredibly knowledgeable, understanding, friendly and detail-oriented. 

“Professor Cristol is so knowledgeable with the subject matter he teaches that class is an incredible experience. He has really cool stories since he’s seen so much of it first hand. In our Weapons of Mass Destruction class, he showed us pictures of him speaking about this topic at international conferences.”


Photo Caption: YU has many professors that go above and beyond for their students.

Photo Credit: Yeshiva University Admissions