July 20, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
July 20, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Touro’s Lander Colleges Celebrate Class of 2019 at Commencement

(Courtesy of Touro College) Graduating seniors at Touro’s Lander colleges marched into Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall on Sunday, receiving their diplomas before an audience of family members and friends. In all, 608 graduates were awarded baccalaureate degrees from Lander College of Arts and Sciences in Flatbush, Lander College for Women and Lander College for Men. Eighty students received associate degrees from Machon L’Parnasa/The Institute for Professional Studies and The School for Lifelong Education at this 45th annual commencement ceremony of Touro College.

Touro also awarded an honorary doctoral degree to Professor Jonathan Halevy, co-director general of Shaarei Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. Professor Halevy established the hospital as a center of excellence and has played a central role in the Israeli healthcare system. He urged students to “keep reading and learning, and always maintain your curiosity…once you become a leader in your discipline, become a mentor yourself.”

Valedictorians Eric (Yitzy) Klipper, Moshe Baitelman, Sarit Hadi and Rebecca (Rivka) Melka all looked beyond “adulting” to talk about becoming leaders and contributors to society. They thanked Touro for preparing them to become successful professionals while maintaining Torah values.

Eric (Yitzy) Klipper, valedictorian of Lander College for Men, quoted former General Electric CEO Jack Welch, who said “Leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.”

Klipper said, “Whether it is a class project, helping an individual through hard times, creating the next technological advancement, or running a country, we as the future leaders must nurture a vision of what we want to accomplish, and do everything we can to achieve it.”

Klipper chose Lander for its small, close-knit community, rigorous academics and Jewish environment. After two years at Yeshivat Shaalvim in Israel, he arrived at Lander determined to pursue every opportunity to prepare for a healthcare career. He challenged himself with advanced biology and chemistry classes, worked as a lab assistant and joined the medical ethics society. He also co-founded Lander’s pre-dental club, which brought both dental students and practicing dentists to speak on campus. A highly motivated student, Yitzy will begin Rutgers School of Dental Medicine this fall. He is a native of Elizabeth and a graduate of JEC High School.

“Yitzy is exactly the kind of student professors love to teach, smart, extremely capable, diligent and with a wonderfully engaging personality. He is deeply committed to academic excellence and to the ideals of Torah study,” said Dr. Moshe Sokol, dean of Lander College for Men.

Klipper graduated with a 4.0 GPA and was on the Dean’s List every semester. “I got to where I want to be: a dental student who is firm in his faith,” he said.

Dr. Alan Kadish, president of Touro College & University System, told the students they had all made a series of choices when they began their academic journey. “One of these choices was to choose Touro’s Lander colleges, where we work to build a university system that will help repair the world through education and Jewish values. My wish for each and every one of you is that you take the lessons that you learned here and truly apply them; that for the rest of your lives you have the opportunity to bring a tikun to a society that truly needs healing. As such, I urge each of you to fully dedicate yourselves to becoming the professional that you would hold up as the standard bearer, not only professionally, but also ethically.”

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles