Thanksgiving Week at Einstein

View of a portion of the wall mural on display along “Main Street” in Forchheimer. To view snapshots from all three Thanksgiving Week events, click on the “Slideshow” link below.
View of a portion of the wall mural on display along “Main Street” in Forchheimer. To view snapshots from all three Thanksgiving Week events, click on the “Slideshow” link below.

In the lead-up to Thanksgiving, Einstein hosted several campus events with gratitude and appreciation at their core. The notion behind these special events was to celebrate the members of our Einstein community and all we've experienced this past year.

"We have a lot to feel fortunate about as we look back on the past year," said Joan Junger, who suggested the Thanksgiving week events with the deans to complement the annual service award ceremony hosted by human resources.

"We have a wonderful community here at Einstein and, as we give thanks for the progress we've made with new Einstein, it's important to remember all of the individuals at the College of Medicine who have contributed to that progress," added Yvonne Ramirez, chief human resources officer. "These events allow us to do that."

On Monday, November 23, Dr. Allen M. Spiegel, the Marilyn and Stanley M. Katz Dean at Einstein, headed to the lounge area of the Einstein Café, where he greeted members of the Einstein community and chatted with them about their work and Thanksgiving plans. Several hundred students, staff and faculty turned out to exchange pleasantries with the dean and to enjoy gourmet cupcakes, hot cider and hot chocolate.

"It was a very upbeat event and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves," noted Dr. Spiegel. "I certainly had a good time meeting and talking with various members of the Einstein community."

On Tuesday, November 24, human resources held its annual Staff Service Recognition ceremony, where employees reaching milestone years from 10 through 45 years of service (at five-year intervals) were celebrated by their colleagues and enjoyed a luncheon/dessert reception. It was standing-room-only in Lubin Dining Hall as Dr. Spiegel and Dr. Steven M. Safyer, president and CEO of Montefiore Health System, offered opening remarks. Renee Coker, human resources' director of employee relations & equity compliance, served as mistress of ceremonies, sharing trivia from 2005 down through 1970 – reflecting each of the years that honorees began their careers at Einstein. Then, Dr. Edward R. Burns, executive dean, read off the names of honorees and posed with each milestone group for a commemorative photo.

"From the beginning, the values of Einstein were the same as those at Montefiore. It just took 60 years to get married," noted Dr. Safyer, who is a member of Einstein's class of 1982. "Einstein's a great institution and it's great to come home."

Rounding out the activities, on Wednesday, November 25, Dr. Burns hosted a coffee break that was more like a Thanksgiving breakfast. It featured waffles with mixed berries and whipped cream, in addition to an assortment of hot beverages. Dr. Burns also shared his wealth of knowledge about Einstein's 60-year history and discussed holiday plans with those who stopped by to meet and chat with him.

"It's always wonderful to interact with members of our community and let them know they are appreciated," said Dr. Burns. "These events offer a chance to connect that isn't often possible. And the waffles are a tasty touch for all of us to enjoy."

Anchoring these events is a special banner, displayed along Einstein's "Main Street" exhibit wall, titled "Thanksgiving at Einstein." The banner features members of the Einstein community at work, representative of the greater community that gives its all to achieve excellence on behalf of the College of Medicine.

A portion of the copy notes: "While the transformation of new Einstein continues to progress, this Thanksgiving season offers an appropriate time to appreciate the tremendous effort put forth by all members of our community. Staff, faculty, postdocs and students have all demonstrated perseverance and a commitment to the excellence that we strive to achieve in education, research and serving the health needs of our community."

In this season of giving, we are grateful to all members of the Einstein community for their contributions, their dedication and their Einstein pride.

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