Hebrew Academy graduates the Class of 2017

by | Jun 23, 2017 | Other News

On Tuesday, June 7, the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater Class of 2017 held a very moving graduation ceremony. Of the 14 students graduating from the school, 12 had attended the HAT since preschool.

Next fall, these graduates will attend a variety of excellent schools including the Gifted Program at Brickell Academy, Plaza International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program, Cape Henry Collegiate, Norfolk Academy, and Norfolk Collegiate.

In her speech to the graduates, Heather Moore, head of school, highlighted the students’ accomplishments during their years at HAT. “You have worked hard and accomplished much in your time at HAT. You have learned to read and write, become proficient in math, learned how to think like scientists, and learned much about physical fitness, created beautiful art pieces, performed musically. You learned the principles of loving kindness, charity, the ethical treatment of people and the earth around us based upon the teachings of the Torah and Jewish history.”

Moore’s advice to the students was, “1. Study hard: everything won’t always come easily and it shouldn’t, work hard, ask for help, keep trying and persevere. 2. Get involved: Find activities, clubs or sports to join that you are interested in and get involved. Don’t worry about whether your friends are interested in the same activities. You will meet new friends who share the same interests and you will have fun along the way. 3. Be courteous and respectful: Good manners and a respectful attitude will go a long way in life.”

Six families were honored as each saw their last child graduate from HAT this year. One of those parents, Burle Stromberg, whose father Hyman Stromberg spearheaded the campaign to build the first HAT building for a community Jewish day school almost 45 years ago, experienced mixed emotions as his youngest child, Sam, graduated from HAT. As Sam joins his older sister Rachael at Norfolk Academy, Stromberg will continue to be involved at HAT as a past president of the Board of Trustees. “We are excited for Sam to start on this next phase of his life, but will miss the close community at the Hebrew Academy. There really is no other place like it where children experience an amazing education in a nurturing Jewish environment.”

– Carin Simon