By: Zachary Klestzick  | 

We Asked Y(O)U Answered: Social Life at Yeshiva University

Establishing a vibrant social community is crucial for many students' college experience, yet students at Yeshiva University deal with challenges such as a demanding academic curriculum, a dual educational schedule and limited campus social activities. While some students will attest to a high-quality social life, others describe it as practically nonexistent. The Commentator asked students from both campuses about their social experiences and suggestions for enhancing campus life. 

Andy Katz (SSSB ‘24)

Business Analytics & Accounting 

“I expected to see a lot of people who I’ve seen from my past from things like camp and stuff. But I thought I would end up chilling with my guys. I ended up meeting a lot of random really cool people from all over the world. On Shabbat that's really my favorite time of the week to see all my guys and chill around the apartment. Although YU is really a great place, I would love to see some more social events going on on campus as I think all types of people who are stressed would be able to benefit.”

Daniel Malinsky (YC ‘25)


“When I first arrived on campus I thought social life would be a lot more exciting and more stuff in general going on. But to my surprise I really ended up hanging out with people who I've known before I got here. I think the reason I haven't met new kids is due to the different backgrounds everyone has here. I also think that the heavy course load is the reason that most people don't hang out as much. When I don’t have social activities to be a part of, I usually end up devoting extra time to my studies. I think there should be an option to be in a less rigorous morning program to allow students to do more work in the morning leaving more free time at night to socialize.”

Allie Orlinsky (SSSB ‘25)


“Coming in I knew not to expect a lot socially here. They said there's not much happening at Stern throughout the week or on weekends. In contrast, my parents had both had very active social lives on the YU campus many years before. This was challenging for me as having a social life in college was incredibly important. Nobody would stay in for Shabbos and everyone was going home all the time. I was looking for a consistent group of friends and couldn't find one. To make things even worse my freshman year took place during COVID-19 which meant I couldn't socialize with new people in a normal way. I also think it's super difficult to find your way if you don't come in with friends. So in the end I found most of my social life downtown at the Chabad of Bowery. I think social life can be better through creating more intercampus events and creating a more fun and engaging Shabbat life.”

Ari Smith (SSSB ‘25)


“I thought my social life here would be terrible as finding fun things to do in the Heights is challenging. To my surprise, my friends and I have found a way to have fun by just chilling in the apartment and talking about life. I also thought balancing my academic course load along with shiur would be hard as I have limited time. So, in the minimal time I have, going to play pickup ball has been a great outlet for me. For newcomers, I genuinely believe the transition to YU is going to be hard if you don't come in with a group of friends and a home relatively close. If I were able to make changes to better student life I would shorten the distance between both campuses, change the school site to a nicer location, and have fun activities that people can participate in on campus.”

Ayelet Bessler (SCW ‘25)


“I expected cliques to be a huge thing in Stern. I was shocked to see that other people are actually looking to make new friends giving it a totally different vibe than sem and the rest of the places I have been to. More specifically, I found that I met a lot of great people while in class doing labs and stuff. Also, it's really cool to run into different people in Stern hubs around the city like Mendy’s and local yoga gyms. I believe your social life is what you make it and if you make an effort to meet and hang out with other people, you will have a super active and engaging social life. I enjoy Shabbat potluck meals, walks to Chabad, and just hanging around in the apartment with people who I’ve met from Stern.”


Photo Caption: YU student body describes diverse social experiences on campus

Photo Credit: Zachary Klestzick