Among the record 4,000 college and high school students who attended AIPAC’s annual Policy Conference in Washington last week, was a strong delegation from the Stella K. Abraham School for Girls of the Hebrew Academy of Long Beach. SKA was one of two schools to receive the coveted Early Engagement Exemplar Award.
SKA’s student delegation to AIPAC was recognized at several sessions for their achievements, and highlighted on the big screen at Verizon Center on Monday morning before the plenary. Several SKA students were asked by AIPAC leadership to introduce sessions throughout the conference, a daunting but exciting prospect for them.
Junior Ayelet Klahr introduced a session in the AIPAC village titled “Israel’s Economic Ecosystem.”
“It was an exhilarating and fulfilling experience to have participated in this way,” she reflected afterwards.
Senior Zehava Gros ranked among the top three students nationwide on AIPAC’s Nguage program. She introduced a breakout session titled, “The Falling Price of Oil: Does America Win or Lose?”
“It was very moving to see how AIPAC focused on the rising generation of activists, high school and college students,” noted Zehava. “Many of the speakers, including the presidential candidates, noted the 4,000 young people in attendance, and charged us to go out and make a difference in the world.”
Senior Sara Raizel Jedwab shared her thoughts on hearing directly from four presidential candidates at AIPAC.
“The relationship between Israel and the U.S. has always been dependent on the president’s convictions,” she said. “I’ve had the same president, with the same views, for close to half my life, and definitely for the entire time that I’ve been politically involved. So hearing from the various presidential candidates with their varying opinions about Israel was empowering for me.
“While I recognize that not all campaign promises are ultimately fulfilled, just sitting there and hearing each candidate firmly pledge their alliances to Israel, was enough to make me feel proud to be a Jew in America.”