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A Tribute to My Friend, Dr. Chaya Gorsetman, z”l

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I had the honor of working with Dr. Chaya Gorsetman at Stern College for Women, Yeshiva University, in the preservice undergraduate educator preparation program for many years. We loved helping teacher candidates develop pedagogical competencies, we had a lot of fun planning arts inquiry programs and we shared ample frustration managing our national accreditation expectations.

I will never forget her generosity, warmth, smiling blue eyes and inexhaustible patience with all learners (myself included). One time I attended an educational conference with Chaya and I can remember her leaning over to whisper in my ear: “Miriam, what is this man saying? Has he ever been in a classroom with real children?” For Chaya, it was always about the children; listening to them, playing with them and talking with them. She was a fierce proponent of play-based early childhood education, and trained legions of early childhood educators to continue her important work.

I will miss my friend so much, and I am eternally grateful to Hashem for the experiences we shared and the opportunity to learn from this remarkable educational leader.

Miriam Hirsch
Chair, Education Major
Associate Professor of Education
Stern College, Yeshiva University
Passaic
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