By: Ethan Schuman  | 

We Asked, Y(O)U Answered: ‘Why I Chose YU’

Students at Yeshiva University come from a wide range of Jewish backgrounds. Many of these students choose to attend YU with specific goals in mind. However, each student undergoes a different experience during their time at the university, and as a result, each student maintains a different perspective on whether or not they attained exactly what they wanted from the institution. The Commentator reached out to several students, asking them why they originally chose to attend YU and whether or not they felt they were obtaining what they wanted to when they originally started here.     

Eliezer Benjamin (YC ‘23) 


“YU was originally a backup option as my grades in high school were not good enough to get into other prestigious universities. However, once I came to YU, I wanted to receive a very high and rigorous level of education, to prepare me for my future in the workforce. 

“I believe the education standards at this institution are what I wanted coming into YU. Although the education might not be as rigorous as other universities I applied to, I feel that I have the tools and skills going forward for the particular field I wish to pursue as well as a great understanding of general world knowledge.”

Ilana Aidman (SCW ‘22)

Graphic Design

I did not have a particular college I really preferred over any other. YU seemed like a choice that could be good or could be bad, and I would basically find out once I spent some time there. I did see that there was an art department and a computer science department. These were positives in YU's favor, because both areas were majors I was considering during my senior year of high school. I applied with the mindset that the decision wouldn't be the end all, because if I needed to, I could transfer. Though it's not perfect, YU turned out to be a good choice for me.

“I am getting the skills I want from YU and I am having a great social life. I am happy to have gained computer graphic and traditional art skills, especially with media I was intimidated by previously. The art department has stellar professors. I believe that I have the foundation to work as a graphic designer or in a similar job. I still have plenty to learn, but I am confident in the skills that I am building. I also enjoyed some of the classes not related to my major including intro python, advertising, economics, and Talmudic vs American law. I have also made connections with people I would be happy to know for the rest of my life. Additionally, it was fun to be on the fencing team, though I did not have room in my schedule this semester. 

E.J. Halpert (SSSB ‘23)

Business Intelligence and Marketing Analytics

“I originally chose YU because I wanted to continue my judaic learning after yeshiva while also being in a Jewish social scene. I realized that I would be one of the only Jewish people who kept Shabbos and kashrut in the college I was supposed to originally attend and I really did not think I would be strong enough in social situations to keep it that way.

“I believe that I am obtaining exactly what I wanted when I chose YU. I am always around a Jewish community. Although it's true that not all of them share my personal values as many are more religious and others are less religious than myself, I never feel like I am fighting my values at this institution.”   

Gabriel Gross (YC ‘24)

English and Philosophy 

“Rabbi Lamm has around six different conceptions of Torah Umadda. It does not appear that one is ‘better’ than another but to me it means going to an intellectually stimulating and meaningful morning seder followed by my philosophy and English classes. I cannot express enough how much I believe YU is really a self-fulfilling prophecy. Some people think there is too much Torah and some think there is too much madda. At the end of the day if you look for something you are missing you will most likely not find it. However, at the end of the day if you look for what there is it can be a gratifying experience to attend Yeshiva University.“I am definitely getting exactly what I wanted from YU! I am able to complete two sedarim of learning while simultaneously attending meaningful/thought provoking classes in the afternoon.”

Photo Caption: Mendel Gottesman Library

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons