Wilf  Campus Election Candidate Profiles Spring 2021

By: Compiled by YU Observer Editorial Staff  |  April 28, 2021

Compiled by YU Observer Editorial Staff

YSU President

Elazar Abrahams

Hi, I’m Elazar Abrahams and I’m running for YSU President! A little bit about me – I’m from Brooklyn and went to MAY for high school followed by shana aleph at Netiv Aryeh. I’m majoring in English and minoring in Political Science. I like vanilla ice cream, the Yankees, and good divrei Torah that don’t involve gematria. I also firmly believe that shtick should exist outside of Adar. 

Baruch Hashem, I was able to accomplish a lot as the Junior Rep on student council this year. Aside from the fun events I helped plan and run (Amaré Stoudemire, Comedy Nights, Yom Haatzmaut tekes and BBQ, etc.), there was a lot behind the scenes. I played a big part in saving the late drop date, bringing back the inter-campus shuttle, and most recently protecting next year’s reading week when YU wanted to cut it. It would be an honor to continue representing you, and I hope I can count on your vote this Thursday! Please reach out with any questions.

YSU Vice President of Clubs

Baruch Lerman

Hi everyone! My name is Baruch Lerman and I am running for YSU VP of Clubs! Over the past two years, I have run some events and advocated on behalf of the students to the administration. I have loved serving the student body and trying to make all our experiences here as enjoyable as possible! I hope to make next year the best year possible by running amazing events, working with the administration to try and improve things for students, and by working hard to make sure everyone’s voices are heard!

YSU Vice President of Affairs

Michael Stark

My goal as VP of Student Affairs is to make you, as students, as happy as possible. I am pro-swag and want to have student council give out as much as possible. I will listen to the students and will take your concerns into consideration. I want to make this coming year as fun and enjoyable as possible! I hope you all vote for me in the elections!

YSU Senior Representative

Joey Wajsberg

Hey Everyone!

My name is Joey Wajsberg. I am originally from Antwerp, Belgium, and moved to New York for college. I am double majoring in Accounting & Marketing. As most of you probably know, the elections are on Thursday, April 29, and I am running for Senior Representative this year.

I am very excited to give it my all, and to have the best final year at YU with all the seniors. I have a lot of amazing ideas and can’t wait to start planning them.

If you can take 30 seconds on Thursday and vote for me, it will be much appreciated!

Of course, if anyone has any questions, feel free to contact me!

YSU Junior Representative

Binyamin Sloves

My name is Binyamin Sloves and I’m running for Junior representative. Why am I running for Junior representative? Well, simply because there are issues within YU that will only get worse if not addressed. I’m from Los Angeles and was off campus this year and wondering: where is all the swag? Whenever I see my YU friends with swag, most of it comes from sports teams. Why can’t I or my friends be decked out in swag if we aren’t on a sports team? How come my friends on teams only have sports swag and not regular YU swag? Is there not enough of it? Does this swag lack aesthetic appeal? Whether we like it or not, we all need more swag. Some of us are in clubs, some of us are in sports teams, some are neither, but they all need more swag. Maybe the clubs can’t afford it? Well then they need a bigger budget. My goal for student council is very simple: students…need…more. They need more money in their clubs for activities. They need more options for food in the cafeteria. They need more plies on their toilet paper around campus. There can ALWAYS be more. More events, more representation in decisions, and absolutely, more swag. My goal for Junior representative is to make the students heard and their needs fulfilled, until they are drowning in the privilege of being a YU student. Vote for me for Junior representative and you’ll see the difference I can make around campus.

Yisroel Tannenbaum

My name is Yisroel Tannenbaum, and I am running for Junior Representative. Over my short time in YU, although it has been incredible in my opinion, there are still many ways we can improve as a community. I am determined to make a more connected and integrated student body. That means shabbatonim involving all the programs, and more activities outside the NY area! I also plan on bringing back some great classes that aren’t offered anymore, including Yiddish.

YCSC President 

Jonah Chill

Hi! My name is Jonah Chill and I am running for Yeshiva College Student Council President. I am a junior from New Rochelle, NY, majoring in political science and minoring in finance. Outside of classes, I am a Writing Center tutor, YUNMUN chair, madrich for the students from Gush (where I went to yeshiva for two years), and serve on the boards of YUPAC and College EDge. In addition, I have also had the immense pleasure of serving as the Vice President of YCSC.

I believe that one’s YU experience is however you make of it. The past year has been tough for a lot of us. As the situation improves, I want the next year to be the start of making up for all the good times, fun activities and interactions we have missed out on. I want to make next year at YU meaningful, both to seniors who will spend their last year on campus and those younger who haven’t had a “normal” YU experience to date.

YCSC Vice President

Elie Shapiro

Abraham Walkenfeld

Hi there fellow YU people,

Allow me to introduce myself. I am Avraham Walkenfeld, and I am running for VP of YCSC (which stands for Yeshiva College Student Council). I am majoring in…I do not know yet, and my life goal is to become super-rich, and so far, the lottery tickets have not worked. So here I am. Some of you may be wondering: why am I not in Syms? The answer is…none of your business — just kidding, it is just too long to explain here. I am running for student council because I understand that the student council rarely accomplishes anything of value, and my goals are absolutely not to accomplish anything from this position. The importance of this position for you the people of YC is that it gives me access to the bully pulpit to advocate for important things. The world rests on 3 pillars, and so I will tirelessly advocate for 3-ply toilet paper, a Nerf gun war over the 3 levels of the library, and pareve ice cream sandwiches for the 3rd meal on Shabbos. The importance of this position for me is that it gives me something to put on my basically empty resume. In all seriousness, I will try to be a good VP who does stuff, and I can guarantee that I will work hard.

David Lifschitz

Hi, My name is David Lifschitz and I’m running for Yeshiva College Student Council Vice President. My main plans are to bring back Nagels, keep improving on the channels of communication between the administration and the student body, and implement more cohesive events between clubs.

YCSC Treasurer

Sapir Amar

My name is Sapir Amar, 22 years old, and I was born in Israel but have been raised in 5 different countries. Yes, really! To be different is to be special — your experiences and stories are what makes you unique.

I am running for YSCS Treasurer because I have great interest in leadership. My goal is to provide support to teachers, shape relationships with students and the public, and strive to create a beneficial school environment for everyone who passes through school gates. 

I am currently studying to become a medical student (and eventually become a doctor, B’ezrat Hashem) since I love to help people and make a difference, which is my main goal in life. I speak English, Spanish and Hebrew fluently and one of my main hobbies is soccer — it is my way to disconnect, distress and “charge my batteries.”

Although it’s my first year at YU, I have realized how the YU community is special. The daily life at YU can be busy and stressful sometimes (let’s admit it). However, besides dealing with the financial aspect of YC, I am here to make the student and life experience at YU an unforgettable one. 

Now that you know a little bit more about me, and who I am — let’s do this together! My goal is to make it happen with you, not alone.

Are you in? Any question you may have I am here to help

Thank you,


AJ Book

Hey hey hey! My name is AJ Book and I’m running to be your YCSC Treasurer! I am confident that my skill set and experience can lead me to be successful in the position and help make some positive changes that will help your college experience. For some background about myself: I am from Teaneck, New Jersey, and I went to Yeshivat Noam and TABC before coming to YU. My track record speaks for itself. Literally, I am the coach of the TABC Storm track team and helped lead them to a first-place finish at the championships in 2019. I’ve helped organize Shabbatons, practices, and fun get-togethers for the Storm team. It’s been an amazing experience, one I am sure will help me in planning events for YCSC. Additionally, I am an avid Star Wars fan. I was even given the “Dark Saber” from a famous celebrity figure. With the force’s help, I plan on blasting our campus to the moon. As Treasurer, I don’t want to ignore the wishes of my classmates. I am a Jedi and can do this. I want to get to know more students and I want to work for what will make them happy. Please, don’t hesitate to reach out. My email is abook@mail.yu.edu

SYMSSC President

Jake Sheckter

My name is Jake Sheckter, I am running for President of the Sy Syms School of Business, and I believe that pioneer problems require pioneer solutions. I have had the good fortune and pleasure to meet many of you through my shiurim, classes, friends of friends, and, most recently, in my position as president and co-founder of the Yeshiva University Stock Exchange (YUSE) club. While I do not have prior experience in student politics, my friends, classmates, club members, and individuals of our esteemed faculty can attest to one thing: I get the job done and I always put in 100%. After listening to countless students in Sy Syms, I’m happy to share my plan to serve the student body, should you elect me president. 

We are living in unprecedented times. If the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the importance of communication and implementing measures to address an issue early on. It is much more effective dealing with the problem before it escalates and becomes overwhelming. Think back to your first year at YU and the daunting challenges it presented. Many of us may have wished that there were additional systems in place to address our personal questions and issues. Now we find ourselves, sophomores, juniors, and seniors alike, having to adapt to a “new” campus, with new protocols and rules; and in a certain sense, we are all freshmen again. I would like to ensure we have the right systems set up to address the potential issues that may arise through the transition to in-person classes. This would also include assembling a ‘COVID Taskforce’ to address pandemic-related issues that arose during our time online. This team of students and faculty would place a strong focus on mental health support, grade issues, international student support, and difficulties with transitioning to in-person classes. I will continue to serve the Sy Syms student body in any capacity I can, and kindly ask for your vote to ensure your voices are heard. Thank you.

Akiva Poppers

$30,000. That was the amount of money in the Syms Student Council budget this year. I won’t let it go to waste. My name is Akiva Poppers, current SOY President, Executive Producer of MacsLive and candidate for SYMSSC President. I’m the only guy in the race who has any experience in student government and working with the YU bureaucrats, which means that I literally will hit the ground running and start the job in May, not in October. It takes 2 months in YU to get anything substantial done, so by the time someone new to the job gets settled in, almost half the year is gone. Despite being on SOY and not SYMSSC, I’ve already been in meetings all year with Deans Wasserman and Strauss, so the transition to SYMSSC will be seamless. 

I’ve got the connections within YU to make sure everyone in Syms gets great swag and in short order. If I win, everyone in Syms will get a Syms dri-fit, baseball cap, and portable charger over the course of the upcoming year. And in case it wasn’t obvious, I love helping YU and the student body, which is why I spent hours computing mathematical calculations which proved that YU’s caf plan 1 1/2 years ago was taking money from students, resulting in the plan being reversed and students being saved $300,000. Lastly, I respond to 98% of WhatsApp messages within 10 seconds, so if you have any ideas or suggestions send me a text. 

Dovi Schlossberg

SYMSSC Vice President

Eden Taranto

Hi, my name is Eden Taranto. I am an Upper Junior, Finance major at Yeshiva University and I’m currently running for Vice President of Syms. Ever since I got to YU back in 2019, I have loved this place with a strong passion, because of both the Jewish lifestyle and the amazing secular curriculum. Throughout my two years in YU, I have been a part of countless clubs on campus, including MacsLive and TAMID. I also made sure to further my involvement by being a board member of The Sephardi Club and Baking Club. Additionally, I founded the Sports Management Club this year because I saw that there was an overall interest in the industry from a decent amount of students and I took the initiative of bringing us together to form a community. I did all of this to show my love for this school, but I have so much more to do as well.

So, why should you vote for me? I believe that my experience being involved on campus is a recipe for bringing an amazing year to YU. I plan on helping integrate in-person classes back to campus and I also hope to work effectively with whoever the Syms board may be in order to bring amazing events, great guest speakers, and more swag! A vote for me is not only a vote for experience, or a vote for a leader, but a vote for me is also a vote for someone who is willing to do the work needed to give our school a great year.

Max Ash

Hey everyone my name is Max (Uri) Ash and I’m running for Syms VP. My campaign is unique in that I have the recruiting and professional experience which none of the other candidates have. I’m going to use this experience to change Syms from the ground up and prepare students for internships and recruiting, well in advance of the interview season.

SYMSSC Treasurer

Gilad Menashe

Hi, my name is Gilad Menashe and I am a current freshman at Yeshiva University, studying at the Sy Syms School of Business. My first year at YU has proven to be one of the most growth oriented years of my life and the university, students, and community has been nothing but positive throughout the year. For this reason, I hope to give back to the university, and I believe that the Syms Treasurer position would be the most appropriate way of going about that. I look forward to the rest of my time at YU, and I hope my future experiences mirror the ones of the past year.

SOY President

Yoni Laub

Hey everyone, my name is Yoni Laub and I’m running for SOY President! I’m from West Orange, NJ, went to TABC for high school, then spent 2 years in Hakotel, and am now finishing up my junior year in YU, where I’m majoring in psychology and minoring in business and learning in Rav Sobolofsky’s shiur. I love to connect with and be there for people, learn, listen to shiurim and podcasts, hang out with friends and family, and drink water. This year, I had the opportunity to be the YP representative where I helped plan events, shabboses, and arranged speakers and I was also an RA for Rubin 5. I look forward to the opportunity to combine my experience and passion and, im yirtzeh Hashem, help make next year’s religious experience on campus as meaningful, enjoyable, and smooth as possible. Please reach out to me at jlaub@mail.yu.edu with any and all questions, concerns, and ideas!

SOY Vice President

Michael Smolowitz

Aryeh Bienstock

SOY Public Relations

Ezra Emerson

Hey there, 

My Name is Ezra Emerson. I am an upcoming Junior in Yeshiva University Sy Syms School of Business and planning to major in either Marketing or Management. I am also planning on Graduating in the spring of ’23. I am running for the position of SOY PR. My reasoning for running is that I can be on the student council and help represent SOY in any way and shape I can. I believe that I have a lot to bring to the table, even though I don’t have much experience on student council. I believe that every position is important to YU, no matter the title given to it. I wish the best of luck to my fellow candidates who are running for all types of different positions, and that we as a whole can make YU great once again.  

SOY BMP Representative

Joey Yellin

Hi there, my name is Joey Yellin. I’m an upper sophomore at YU, and I am currently attending SY SYMS. I am officially running for the position of BMP representative, and want to tell you why: simply, people are bored. People tell me that they find it hard to get out of bed in the morning, and that they have nothing to look forward to during the day. Indeed, not everyone struggles with motivating themselves to get their day started; however, I don’t think it should be a challenge for anyone. Now, I’m not here trying to convince you that I’m going to change the world. But, I am here telling you that I can change the state of my morning program — BMP. So, whether it is BMP shabbatonim, inter-shiur softball games, BBQs, or bringing in fun personalities to speak to the guys, I want to help everyone I can to enjoy their time here as much as I am. My name is Joey Yellin, and I am the right choice for BMP representative. 

Aharon Traurig

Hi, I’m Aharon Traurig, I am currently a Junior majoring in Accounting and have been a talmid in Rav Schnall’s BMP shiur for the last two years. As BMP representative I intend on ensuring that all students have the best college experience possible. This includes working with the other Student Council members as well as Rebbeim, OSL, and administrators. I will aim for events specifically for BMP talmidim such as shiurim and shabbatonim, as well as getting BMP SWAG! I’ve been on campus BEFORE COVID and know what life on campus used to be. I am prepared to work tirelessly to cut through the bureaucracy and succeed in improving everyone’s experience.  Don’t forget to vote TRAURIG for BMP representative.

SOY IBC Representative

Jonathan Saks

Max Friedman

Hi, my name is Max Friedman. I’m from St. Louis, Missouri, and am attending my first year at YU. I‘m running for IBC representative with the overall goal to make IBC a much more communal experience. Personally, I believe that one of the flaws of IBC this past year was that we were not able to hold many Shabbat meals or events (some of that was obviously due to COVID circumstances). Next year, I pledge to not only hold activities that people can go to, but gauge interest from the people, holding events they will be actually interested in.

SOY JSS Representative

Marc Ziarno

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Wilf Campus student council elections will be taking place Thursday, April 29.