Allie Resnick, 37, prides herself on staying curious. Not just for herself, but to further what she’s passionate about — the field of education.
Resnick is the director of strategic partnerships and recruitment at Gratz College. But this isn’t her first foray into the field. Resnick, who lives with her husband and their children in South Philadelphia and belongs to Temple Beth-Zion Beth Israel near Rittenhouse Square, has a long history in school leadership and education nonprofits.
“Every day, I get to uphold my commitment by strengthening communities through education,” Resnick said.
But sometimes that’s a challenge, especially with the recruitment climate suffering since the pandemic struck.
Resnick said that recently, higher education has seen significant drops in enrollment in undergraduate programs and, more recently, a decline in graduate enrollment. The National Association of Graduate Admissions Professionals’ predictions for graduate enrollment forecast a “cliff” projected to begin in 2025. The forecast cliff comes from concerns about competition, enrollment goals, program costs, staff responsibilities, mental health and burnout — in part due to the pandemic, according to NAGAP.
“More pathways to careers have become prominent, such as apprenticeships or boot camps,” Resnick said. “More people are finding these opportunities to gain valuable skill-building and experience that will launch them into successful careers without being saddled in debt from college tuition.”
But Resnick has faith. According to her, Gratz College caters to a specific audience — primarily educators seeking graduate programs that will further their development and allow them to advance in their careers.
“We (Gratz) are the world’s largest provider of graduate-level certificates, masters and doctoral programs in Holocaust and genocide studies,” Resnick said.
Before her involvement at Gratz College, Resnick furthered education through other avenues. She said her career has focused on ensuring access to education for all students. Most recently, Resnick was the investments director at Elevate 215. She has also served as the assistant principal with Aspire Public Schools in the San Francisco Bay area, where she created systems and structures to help promote a positive learning environment.
One of these projects, the Positive Behavior and Intervention Management Plan, reduced suspensions by 70% and office referrals by 55%, according to Resnick.
Resnick created a handbook and professional development for teachers that included positive reinforcement techniques, which she said provided students and teachers with the knowledge to support one another and succeed in the classroom.
She was drawn to Gratz in part because it’s a Jewish institution leading with the values Resnick says she holds closest — tikkun olam and lifelong learning — and because the graduate school is focused on developing educators, she said.
Resnick mentioned that her favorite Jewish holiday is right around the corner: Rosh Hashanah.
“I enjoy the time to both be reflective and have a fresh start while being surrounded by my family and the synagogue community,” Resnick said. “I also use it as a time to think about my dad and his love for Judaism and life.”
Resnick’s father, Jeffrey Kramer, died in 2018 due to ALS.
“He would be so proud to know that I’ve immersed myself in the Jewish professional space and am building on our own family’s Jewish practices and traditions and passing this on to my children,” Resnick said.
Looking forward, Resnick said she hopes to continue to grow professionally by pursuing further education and experiences that will keep her learning.
“I’m in the Jewish professional space, and I’d love to take advantage of the exciting Jewish education provided right here at Gratz,” she said.