by Jesse Tawil (’13)

This past Wednesday night, the annual Yeshiva University High Schools Dinner of Tribute took place at Terrace on the Park in Flushing Meadows, Queens. The evening started with a special shiur delivered by Meir Finkelstein (’13), followed by a special shiur by a senior from YUHSG-Central. After the shiurim, a buffet dinner was served. Donny Chamish (’14) and Tsahi Halyo (’16) had a booth to present their projects for MTA LEAD (MTA’s program in partnership with the Sy Syms School of Business), and a booth was also set up to present some of the unique Torah opportunities available at MTA and to distribute copies of the inaugural issue of Pirchei Yitzchak (a collection of hebrew divrei torah written by MTA rebbeim and students).

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After the dinner and socializing, the guests made their way to the next room as Dinner co-chair David Schwartz (’94) introduced the program. Mrs. C.B. Neugroschl, Head of School at Central, spoke and presented a faculty award to Mrs. Linda Smith, Central’s longtime Director of Athletics. Mrs. Smith proudly accepted the award and humorously spoke about her pride in being part of the school, as well as about how much she has learned about Judaism along the way.

Next, Rabbi Taubes took the podium and highlighted some of the many things that have taken place at MTA over the past year, and delivered a message from The Rav about the need for emotionally connected and empathetic educators, who can relate to their students in many different ways. This, of course, connected well to Dr. Taylor who was MTA’s faculty awardee and who has been a proud member of the MTA faculty for 25 years with his dedicated and passionate commitment to teaching history, as well as serving as our General Studies Principal and coordinating all of our schedules. Many alums from the past 25 years came out to pay tribute. Dr. Taylor accepted the award, and described that it was, in fact, his mother that had initially submitted his resume to the school – unbeknownst to him – while he was a doctoral student at NYU.

Following the faculty awards, a special presentation was made to honor Yishai Eisenberg (’16), this year’s winner of the International Chidon HaTanach and the first American to earn this prestigious victory in 25 years. After watching a clip of the conclusion of the competition, which took place in Israel on Yom HaAtzma’ut, YU President Richard Joel presented Yishai with a framed certificate and a leather bound Tanach. Finally, Mrs. Miriam Goldberg, the beloved Chair of the Board of Trustees, took to the stage to bestow an award to the evening’s Guests of Honor, Mr. and Mrs. Louis and Naomi Tuchman.

The evening concluded with dessert and a wonderful performance by the MTA band.

Seniors were invited to attend the dinner and it was a great opportunity to have the chance to gather with the MTA community to celebrate the school. On a personal note, let me add that it has been a privilege to have been a student here for the last four years. It has been a long and important part of my life, as I’m sure it has been for all of us seniors, and I just want to say THANK YOU to all my teachers and friends for this school and the experience it was for me. We couldn’t have done it without each other, and I look forward to being in contact with all of you in the future.

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