In 1987 the Sy Syms School of Business was established through a generous gift by Mr. Sy Syms. From its inception, the
school pledged to offer a unique and comprehensive curriculum in business with
strong liberal arts and a deep grounding in Judaic studies. The founding dean,
Dr. Michael Schiff, formerly head of the accounting department at NYU’s Stern
School of Business, and the founding associate dean, Ira Jaskoll, quickly established it as a key business school in New York
City, adding it to the many strong undergraduate, graduate, and professional
schools already offered at Yeshiva University.
Faculty members were recruited who
had both the highest academic and scholarly credentials, as well as
cutting-edge professional experience. The enthusiasm for business was being met
as students applied and began to enroll in the Sy Syms School.
An active Placement Office was
established with local, national, and international firms excited about hiring
Syms graduates. Not only were students well prepared academically, but the dual
curriculum and ethical basis of their Judaic and secular studies classes made
them extremely attractive to potential employers. As the alumni continued to
excel, recruiters continued to come back for more.
In the early years, the school hosted
distinguished visiting faculty through the Dr. Ira Kukin Distinguished Visiting
Professorship. These appointments included Dr. Franco Modigliani of MIT and a
Nobel Prize winner, and Dr. Clarence Walton, former President of Catholic
University, who taught our first ever course in corporate social
With the arrival of Dr. Harold
Nierenberg as the second dean, the school moved into an expansion phase. The
Ira Rennert Entrepreneurial Institute was created to assist Syms students in
starting and running their own businesses. The Doris and Dr. Ira Kukin Entrepreneurial
Lecture Series provided, and continues to provide, students with the
opportunity to interact with top corporate executives and CEOs. Speakers
included Michael Bloomberg, Alan "Ace" Greenberg of Bear Stearns,
Mickey Drexler of J Crew, Ivan Seidenberg of Verizon, Warren Eisenberg of Bed
Bath and Beyond, Joel Mael of the Florida Marlins, Sumner Redstone of Viacom,
and Abby Joseph Cohen of Goldman Sachs.
The school also began to offer the
Dr. William and Bernice Schwartz Business Plan Competition with substantial
cash prizes for outstanding business plans. A Syms Alumni Association was
established, with many alumni wanting to give back to the school.
The third dean, Dr. Charles Snow,
launched the Executive Roundtable, chaired by Josh Weston, former CEO of ADP,
where students, alumni and members of the Sy Syms School of Business Board of
Overseers would meet over dinner to network.
Over the years, one of the highlights
of the schools has been the annual Syms School of Business Student Dinner and
Reception. The dinner, which was organized by the Syms Student Council, was
held in different venues each year including the Museum of Jewish Heritage, the
Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum, the Yeshiva University Museum, Chelsea
Piers, the South Street Seaport, and the Circle Line.
In 2005, the school hosted its second
Noble Prize winner, Dr. Robert Aumann of Hebrew University. He is the first
Torah Observant Jew to win a Nobel Prize. He gave classes on Game Theory to
Syms, Yeshiva College, and Stern College students and faculty.
With the arrival of Dr. Michael
Ginzberg as the fourth dean of Syms, the school enhanced it academic presence
and reputation. Accreditation in AACSB International was made and continues to
be a priority for the school. A new, updated curriculum was created and
launched in the fall of 2010. The size of the faculty was increased and the
amount and quality of scholarly publications increased dramatically. An
Entrepreneur-in-Residence was named, Professor Michael Strauss, to assist
students is developing their business ideas and to help set up internships
within the community.
The first graduate program was
started in fall 2009, an MS in Accounting, to fulfill the New York State
150-credit requirement for Certified Public Accountants. The first class
graduated in May 2010.
On June 1, 2011, the University
announced a new leadership team as part of a broad, University-wide,
re-imagining process, signally the beginning of our next phase of growth and
As the Sy Syms School of Business
celebrates its 26th anniversary, under the new leadership team of Dr. Moses Pava
(Dean), Professor Mike Strauss (Associate Dean), and Dr. Avi Giloni (Associate
Dean) there is a renewed focus on integrating ethics into every course,
celebrating the spirit of Jewish entrepreneurship across the curriculum, and
emphasizing experienced-based learning in everything we do. We are returning to
the founding values of both the University and the Business School in order to
re-energize our efforts as we move into the future. We do so in order to better
articulate our mission and goals, to measure our progress in a systematic and
rational way, and to make ongoing changes as needed. While maintaining its
commitment to excellence in research, the school is re-dedicating itself to
meeting the demanding and ever-changing needs of its current and future
students, and other stakeholders.
In the summer of 2012, our unique
Sabbath observant Executive MBA (EMBA) enrolled its first cohort of students.
Classes are being held on Sundays instead of the usual Saturdays. In the fall
of 2012, we launched our brand new Honors and Entrepreneurial Leadership
Program. We are continuously planning and designing news courses like
Principles of Success and the Causes and Cures of the Financial Crisis taught
by leading academics and practioners. This semester, President Richard Joel is
teaching a course on leadership at Syms, as part of our newly developed
“Leading with Meaning” initiative.
Yeshiva University's Mission Statement for all of its undergraduate
schools is as follows:
We bring wisdom to life by combining the finest, contemporary
academic education with the timeless teachings of Torah. It is Yeshiva's unique
dual curriculum, which teaches knowledge enlightened by values, that helps our students
gain the wisdom to make their lives both a secular and spiritual success.
The particular mission of the Sy Syms School of Business
To be the business school appropriate to Yeshiva
University, a university with a unique mission of Torah Umadda that emphasizes
quality teaching and research, highly respected by students, parents, alumni
and our academic colleagues.
500 West 185th Street
New York, NY 10033
500 West 185th Street
New York, NY 10033
Please fill out the form below to submit any feedback, comments or concerns.
Close this window