web analytics
March 6, 2015 / 15 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post


Student’s Commencement Speech in D.C. Emphasizes Torah Values

Gabriel Felder was selected for the prestigious honor of representing his graduating class at The George Washington University commencement, marking the second year in a row that a Jewish student leader has done so.

Gabriel Felder was selected for the prestigious honor of representing his graduating class at The George Washington University commencement, marking the second year in a row that a Jewish student leader has done so.
Photo Credit: Chabad.org

A popular Jewish student at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.—known for proudly wearing his kippah  around campus—delivered the commencement speech on Sunday afternoon imparting to some 25,000 fellow graduates, faculty, family and friends the importance of utilizing each moment to its fullest.

Gabriel Felder, of Stamford, Conn., was selected for the prestigious honor of representing his graduating class at commencement, marking the second year in a row that a Jewish student leader has done so. Felder reflected on words his departed father, Louis Felder, told him before he went off to college, and cited timeless words of Torah as providing a life path.

Representing the graduating class of 2014 before the throng gathered outdoors at the National Mall, Felder—a political communication major in the Columbian College of Arts & Sciences’ School of Media and Public Affairs—emphasized that at every stage of life, especially during these formative years, a person must “live in the moment, and make the most of each and every opportunity.”

Felder served as president of GW’s Jewish Student Association, held multiple positions at GW Hillel and served on the board of GW’s Chabad Freshmen Jewish Club. He was also a regular at the campus Chabad run by Rabbi Yudi and Rivky Steiner, with whom he worked to improve Jewish life for students. Friends describe him as an inspiring person who created bridges between the Jewish community and the rest of the university, and represented the Jewish people well throughout his four years there.

Gabriel Felder
Gabriel Felder

Felder began his address recalling a conversation he and his father had over ice-cream after returning from freshman orientation. After asking his son whether he was excited to be going to GW—and getting a resoundingly positive reply back—Louis Felder replied: “Good! Just don’t waste it!”

“He passed away just a little over a month after that humid June night,” Felder told the audience, without sharing the fact that his father was killed, along with seven fellow workers, in a murderous rampage at his workplace, breaking the hearts of millions who sat riveted to their television screens.

Displaying some of the tenacity and optimism that carried him through his subsequent years in college, Felder stated that as a newly minted “Colonial,” as GW students are called, “it was in my blood” not to waste any G‑d-given time or opportunities.

Felder explained that he and his fellow students learned well the teaching of the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory, that “in each journey of our lives we must fully be where we are. We may only be passing through on our way to somewhere else seemingly more important. Nevertheless, there is purpose in where we are right now.”

“I can look today at this crowd and see proud parents beaming at the sight of their children in their caps and gowns,” Felder continued. “And I can look in my mother and my sisters’ faces and I can say wholeheartedly to my father that [I made] the most of my four years.”

The proud graduate went further to proclaim on behalf of all his fellow students “that none of us have wasted the amazing opportunity that it was to be given an education at The George Washington University.”

Grateful for Support

Felder also reminded his classmates that “commencement is a moment to take a step back and really think about all of the people who helped you get to this point,” urging them to “think back and be grateful for every professor who taught you to stand up and be heard; to every mentor that pushed you to lead and to not follow; and to every advisor you had, for his or her endless help in ensuring your education was the best it could be.”

About the Author: Chabad.org is a division of the Chabad-Lubavitch Media Center, under the auspices of the Lubavitch World Headquarters


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Student’s Commencement Speech in D.C. Emphasizes Torah Values”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., the United States, calling for rejection of a bad nuclear deal with Iran, on March 03, 2015.
Post-Bibi Bipartisanship May Result in Congressional Ability to Review Iran Deal
Latest Blogs Stories
Faisal J. Abbas, Editor-in-Chief of the English-language Al Arabiya

When evil threatens to conquer the world, it’s the duty of free nations to endeavor to prevent it.

Megillat Esther

There are many questions surrounding Purim, here are a few answers….

Palestinian Authority Funded Terror

The Palestinian Authority, led by the “moderate” Abbas, and murderous terrorism are synonyms.

Obama Bedelia

Kerry…and Bide…and EVERY DEMOCRAT just happened to be unavailable to meet with Netanyahu.

Why is it necessary to be accountable in business and in life? And how does it differ from guilt?

I’d rather you label me a concerned Jew, an Israeli. Someone who cares about the future of my nation

Goldberg chose to believe two impossible things before I had breakfast this morning.

The State Department claims Bibi revealing details of the bad Iranian deal to Americans would be a “betrayal”.

“Please stop shushing me” They kept shushing! Shushing seems to be how Leftists do Israeli politics!

Labor-Livni post-Zionist party’s campaign based on their claim they know how to keep the US happy

Mentioning genocide in the same breath as Susan Rice crosses a redline about Obama’s foreign policy

What are the ramifications of giving up your US citizenship? Would it effect your visiting the US?

Chasidim believe that Metzitza B’Peh (MbP) is an essential part of the circumcision ritual.

AMERICAN INTERFERENCE in ISRAELI ELECTIONS is IMMORAL and 1000% CHUTZPADIK!

Extremism from Jews is considered a “danger;” Arab extremism and anti-Jewish terror is “legitimate”

More Articles from Chabad.org
A rocket fell near a Synagogue in the Ukraine during some of the worst of the fighting between pro-Russia separatists and government forces. (archive)

“This is yet another extraordinarily difficult day that we have endured, and sadly, we have recently known many especially difficult and terrible days.”

Gabriel Felder was selected for the prestigious honor of representing his graduating class at The George Washington University commencement, marking the second year in a row that a Jewish student leader has done so.

Felder said he and his fellow students learned well the teaching of the Rebbe.

Chabad Rabbi Michael Oishie had left the building just 20 minutes before the attack.

Canadian Chabad rabbis accompanied Harper on his trip.

“It was quite an institutionalized racism, and we didn’t come to get involved in politics.”

Gematria is more than random wordplay.

We are brought into this confusing, fascinating, infuriating world for such a short amount of time, and it’s our mission to accomplish what we can for the several decades we are allotted.

If one has only enough money to afford either a cup of wine for Shabbat kiddush or oil for his Hanukkah lamp, the mitzvah of Hanukkah takes precedence.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/guest-blog/students-commencement-speech-in-d-c-emphasizes-torah-values/2014/05/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: