Local students win medals at international competition

Orange County. Three students were awarded medals for their mastery of Jewish knowledge.

| 10 May 2023 | 05:23

In a proud representation of Chabad Hebrew School of Orange County, three students were awarded medals at the International JewQ Competition in Stamford, CT. After several long months of hard work and preparation, the students, who attend Chabad Hebrew School of Orange County, displayed an impressive mastery of Jewish knowledge.

After excelling in the regional rounds middle school students, Shepard Hoffman of Goshen, Heather Sentell of Monroe and Matan Kalkstein of Monroe advanced to the international level. In a knowledge competition with minds from around the world, each shined as they took home medals. Heather Sentell and Matan Kalkstein took home silver medals, and Shepard Hoffman won a bronze medal.

Hudson Mendelovits of Central Valley and Heather Sentell of Monroe were both awarded a trophy at the Chabad Hebrew School of Orange County Regional events for scoring the highest on their tests locally. Ariana Briggins of Monroe scored a certificate of high recognition for her achievements.

“The student’s success is a testament to the high-quality education that Chabad Hebrew School of Orange County provides to its students,” said Chana Burston, who directs the Hebrew School together with her husband, Rabbi Pesach. “The school’s curriculum, which focuses on Jewish studies, Hebrew language, and Jewish culture, has helped all of our students to develop a deep understanding of their heritage.”

“We are extremely proud of the JewQ champions and their outstanding performance,” Rabbi Pesach Burston added. “Their dedication and hard work have paid off, and each champion is a shining example of what our students can achieve.”

Now in its fifth year, the International JewQ Competition is an annual event which displays and celebrates months of learning put forth by Hebrew school students. The contestants must first pass several rounds of exams on a local level. The top performers from each region then move on to compete in the international championship. This year’s event saw 300 finalists compete in the final competition. The program is specifically designed to encourage children to learn about the fundamentals of their Jewish heritage.