Directed Drive Resulting in $3,000,000 Fund
Harris L. Selig, Executive Director of the Yeshiva College Building Fund, the organization which is responsible for the planning and the construction of the Yeshiva College recently dedicated in New York City, tendered his resignation to the Campaign Committee to become effective January 1, 1929.
Following a three year effort, which resulted in raising the amount of over $3,000,000, covering the construction cost of the Yeshiva College buildings at Amsterdam Avenue and 186th St., New York, and an initial fund for endowment and maintenance, Mr. Selig will leave for a trip to Europe and Palestine on January 15th.
The Yeshiva College Campaign Committee accepted Mr. Selig’s resignation with regret, expressing recognition for his devotion and zeal in the conduct of the campaign. The committee expressed the hope that upon his return from Europe Mr. Selig will lend his services to the cause of the Yeshiva College when the plans for enlarging the institution and placing it on a sound financial basis will be completed.
The Yeshiva College campaign which was begun three years ago under the direction of Mr. Selig was a most spectacular one. Until that date Orthodox institutions were associated in the public mind with the picture of old, dilapidated and ill-cared-for buildings. Maintenance funds were gathered by poorly organized collections of minor or small amounts. The application of modern methods of campaigning under the direction of Mr. Selig resulted in revolutionizing the outlook on the needs and problems of Jewish higher education.
Outstanding in this record were the “$1,000 dinners,” two of which were held during the campaign; the first on May 24, 1925, resulted in the raising of $1,000,000, the second held on December 13, 1928, on the occasion of the dedication, was attended by 1,400 persons.
“In winding up the affairs of the campaign, I wish to state that without the whole-hearted and untiring cooperation of the campaign committee headed by Mr. Samuel Levy, these results would not have been possible,” Mr. Selig stated.
“It is a matter of public record that in the Yeshiva College campaign a new standard in giving for Jewish educational purposes has been established. Few believed that the ideal of perpetuating Jewish learning under the new conditions will be able to kindle the imagination of our people. Those who were convinced of the necessity were less prone to believe that the response in terms of financial support would be adequate to insure progress. It was a hard and difficult task imposed upon the director by the small band of New York Jewish leaders who composed the campaign committee. The impressive dedication ceremonies constituted an irrefutable answer to those who doubted at first cither the advisability or the possibility of the Yeshiva College project,” he stated.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.