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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Flatbush Students Participate in the 2018 Virtual Enterprise International Youth Business Summit

On April 18, 2018 Yeshivah of Flatbush Joel Braverman High School students participated in the Virtual Enterprise Youth Business Summit at pier 92 in Manhattan. The Youth Business Summit brings together thousands of rising young professionals and budding entrepreneurs from over 40 countries, educators, school/district administrators, business leaders, deans of college business departments and industry professionals for a one-of-a-kind global convention.
The students are part of Mr. Kweller’s Virtual Enterprise class and have been working all year to create, manage and market their virtual business. Students have been involved in every aspect of running their virtual business including putting together business and marketing plans, completing financial reports, developing webpages and marketing campaigns, and managing sales and interactions with other virtual enterprise firms.
The Summit was an opportunity for students to present their elevator pitch, sell their products and personally interact with other Virtual Enterprise firms from throughout New York City, the United States, and the World. The young entrepreneurs were able to successfully display the professional skills and business acumen they have developed by running a Virtual Enterprise company during the school year. The students enjoyed themselves, learned a great deal, demonstrated their knowledge of the financial industry, and made important connections with the local business leaders.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Flatbush Students Pass Legislation at HAFTR Model Congress

Congratulations to Model Congress team members Robert Adler, Michael Oved, Sonny Setton and Mazal Zebak for their performances at the HAFTR tournament on Tuesday, April 17 / 2 Iyar. In lively interactive sessions, students create and debate original legislation and learn about the major issues facing the United States today. Through participation, students also garner points towards their merit levels in the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA), a nationally recognized organization. Robert was awarded a gavel in recognition of his role as "Presiding Officer" and Michael won a medal for his hiLgh level of performance. We look forward to future successes in this great program!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Flatbush Students Compete in Yale Math Competition


This past Sunday, April 16th, the Flatbush Falcons attended the annual MMATHS (Math Majors of America Tournament for High Schools) competition for the 3rd time. The day comprised of an individual, a mixer and a team round.

While all on the team took the first individual round, 12 convoluted questions over the span of 75 minutes, Team Captain Yaron Sternberg advanced to the Tie Breaker. The Tie Breaker comprised of 4 proof based questions for an additional 75 minutes. His performance would ultimately place him in third.

Simultaneously, as the Tie Breaker round occurred, the rest of the students were divided for the mixer round. Teams were randomized as students would work to solve problems with non-Team members. Mazal Zebak and her team placed third and Joe Sutton with his team placed first, flaunting his awarded chocolate with pride.

The real Falcon spirit showed, when of the ten schools attending, the Falcons worked together for the team round. While solved problems contributed to the score live, the Falcons fell in and out of the lead. Ultimately, by a difference of a mere point, the Falcons took third.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Students Compete in Moot Court Competition

On Thursday, April 12th Yeshivah of Flatbush Joel Braverman High School students met to compete in the Yeshivah’s annual Moot Court Competition. The students had been working with faculty advisor Leor Kweller researching legal issues, studying case law and refining arguments in preparation for the competition. Each team consisted of a lawyer, witness and research/fact checker. The teams were responsible for working as a group and putting together a winning strategy that would convince the judges of the merits of their argument. This year’s case involved a famous hip-hop artist and the issue of whether song lyrics can be classified as defamation.
The competition was close and all the teams impressed but specifically deserving merit for the creativity and legal foundations of their argument were Aaron Fine, Leor Yazdi, Barbara Dayan, Bella Dweck and Virginia Dweck.
A special thanks to Robert Adler, Aaron Nadjar, Michael Feldman, Rose and Marry Ftiha for helping to organize a fantastic and academically engaging competition.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Sephardic Heritage Trip 2018/5778: Day 7 - A Royal Farewell

We started our final day in Spain with our last lavish breakfast and then headed out to the Royal Palace. Although this is the official residence of King Felipe and his family, they choose not to live in the sprawling palace with 3,162 rooms. Instead it’s used only for official business. We marveled at the opulent decor that spanned a wide variety of styles colors, and influences. But then it was time to load the bus and head to the airport for our way home. It’s hard to believe that a trip that we planned for so long has come to an end, but it was a memorable experience for all of us!

Sephardic Heritage Trip 2018/5778: Day 6 - Seville

Though we lost an hour when they changed the clock last night, we still departed from Gibraltar bright and early. We thought we made great timing when we crossed the border without incident, but then our bus broke down as soon as we got into Spain. We made up for our lost sleep while we waited for a new bus, but then we were off to Seville. 
We started our day at Plaza de Santa Cruz the site of a church that had been a mosque that was given to the Jews to use as a synagogue in 1248. Then we went down into a parking garage which was built on the site of an ancient Jewish cemetery. Though most of the graves were destroyed, one remains there. The bones that were exhumed were never reburied and our guide Moses is fighting the legal battle to have them returned to Kever Yisrael. 
Then we walked through the old city of Seville towards Alcazar - the palace of King Pedro. Along the way we saw evidence of Jewish persecution. The majestic palace was built in the 14th century in an Islamic style called “mudejar.” We were in awe of the incredible architecture and loved hearing that they filmed Game of Thrones here. We planned to go to the incredible Plaza de España but it was closed because of the (non-existent) wind. We’ve been told that we need to do a reunion trip because we missed out on something so amazing. 
Then we headed to the station to take the high speed train back to Madrid. In Madrid we checked back into the Novotel and then gathered in the lobby for an inspiring wrap up session. We reflected on our experiences and discussed how the trip impacted our understanding of our background and heritage. It’s crazy to think that we’re going home tomorrow!!!

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Sephardic Heritage Trip 2018/5778: Day 5 - Shabbat in Gibraltar

We had the pleasure of spending Shabbat in the beautiful Jewish community of Gibraltar. After a beautiful picture in our Shabbat finery, we lit candles and went to pray Kabbalat Shabbat and Arbit in the majestic Nefusot Yehuda shul. Then we had a delicious catered meal in a local hall. In addition to divrei Torah from some of the girls and beautiful singing, we got to hear from Moses, our tour guide. He told us about the sacrifices he needs to make to live as a Jew in Seville, Spain - a place where there is almost no Jewish community. He told us how special it is for him and his family to spend a Shabbat like this, and he reminded us to be grateful for the opportunities that we have and often take for granted. This morning we prayed Shaharit at the oldest shul in Gibraltar - Shaarei Shamayim where we got to see the interesting customs of the Western Sephardic Jews. On our way to lunch we got to see the parade of the National Guard - in their kilts and fur hats - marching down Main Street. We also saw lots of proud Jewish families walking home from shul - it was almost like being on Ocean Parkway! Before going back to the hotel for our Shabbat nap, we went around the table and everyone shared their favorite or most meaningful part of the trip. We had free time in the afternoon, and some girls even went to shul to hear a shiur about Pesach with some of the chaperones. The most special part of the day was visiting the Lasry family and praying Mincha and watching sunset from their porch that has views of both the water and the Rock. We ended Shabbat with an inspiring kumzitz and then headed back to the hotel to get ready to go bowling! 
Bowling was lots of fun - especially with good music playing in the background and delicious Gibraltar-style pizza and “chips.” 
The highlight of the night was a surprise birthday party, complete with a piñata and a delicious cake. Tomorrow morning will be a bittersweet goodbye to Gibraltar as we head back into Spain for our last full day on the trip.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Sephardic Heritage Trip 2018/5778: Day 4 - Gibraltar

We arrived in Gibraltar late last night where we were greeted by a delicious light supper in Amar’s - the country’s one and only kosher cafe. We then checked into the newly renovated Elliot Hotel. There were lots of cheers when we announced that wake up wasn’t until 8:45.
This morning we headed out to explore the famous Rock of Gibraltar! We went up to the top on a cable car where we were treated to a breathtaking view of three different countries -Morocco, Spain, and Gibraltar! We got to meet the famous Barbary apes up close and personal - especially when one stole an avocado straight out of someone’s bag! 
We then hiked down to the famous St. Michael’s Caves where we ooh-ed and ahh-ed over the magnificent stalactites and stalagmites. For our final stop, we learned about the history of Gibraltar and climbed through the siege tunnels that the British built in the late 18th century.
For the rest of the afternoon to shop and experience the quaint Main Street in Gibraltar. The highlight was getting greeted almost every block by members of the warm and vibrant religious Jewish community here. Then we went back to the hotel where we got ready for Shabbat. We are so excited to spend Shabbat in this amazing country with this incredible community!!!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

New Orleans Chesed Trip 2018/5778: Day 4

We started off our bonus day of the NOLA Chesed trip at around 10:30am after getting to sleep in late. We took advantage of the warm weather and took a walk to Cafe Du Monde where we enjoyed beignets- part two! We then continued to Target where we got Starbucks and clean clothes. Later, we headed to an airboat for a swamp tour were we took lots of pictures and even got to hold a baby alligator. We had the opportunity to see the Louisiana marshland up close. We saw many alligators and enjoyed the scenic tour on the water. 
We then took a stop at Lafreniere Park were we used the great lighting to take more pictures- Mr. Galpert needed for the Instagram! We played frisbee, walked around and watched the ducks in the river. We then went back to Casablanca for dinner and headed back to the hotel. We hope to be on our way back to New York tomorrow morning after an amazing and meaningful trip. It truly was “quacktastic!” ~Kelly Esses, Class of 2018