Maccabi Games

The Honor Society: a nationally-known society created to recognize and reward students who excel in leadership and academics. To be awarded with this award, one must have a GPA of 3.5 unweighted and excel in their academics. However, it is not just about academics, it is not simply about a student’s grade point average. “The National Honor Society strives to recognize the total student – the one who excels in all areas,” as stated by Christina Florez. The students who are selected represent the five Scheck Hillel Values: chesed, ruach, emet, kavod, and shalom. Those who earn this award have to carry great responsibilities, duties, and obligations to uphold the Honor Society values.  


Every year, the school gathers around to celebrate those who excelled in the past school year. This year was no different. Leah Winterman started off the ceremony with a D’Var Torah. This was then followed by words of the new officers of the honor society, Jaime Mizrahi, Jamie Kurzer, Jonathan Lev-Tov, Meitalia Factor, and Moises Jamri. Jaime introduced the honor society, while the rest of the officers introduced the current members. Prior to the assembly, there were 60 students in the Honor Society. Consequently, the new inductees were split into five categories prior to being inducted into the society: scholarship, leadership, service, citizenship, and character. By exemplifying these five qualities, the new inductees were rewarded with their great academic achievements. Fifty-seven new members were introduced, each with their own merit and deserving of the award. 


Each quality has its separate meaning, each unique and special in its own way.  Scholarship is a commitment to learning. It shows that a student’s knowledge has increased not just academically, but also individually. Leadership demonstrates a student’s ability to be present in their society, to take charge of the curve and be an example to others. A true leader is marked by self-confidence and control, both of which are born of experience and an understanding of people. Service refers to the willingness to work for others, perfectly aligned with Jewish values. Willingness to Work for the benefit of those in need, without monetary compensation. Citizenship refers to those who feel strongly towards justice, freedom, and understanding. Being a citizen not only requires civic responsibility, but also occupations within the household. Last but not least, character, what differentiates one person from the other. Each person is unique, one’s characteristics take them through the good and bad times. Character is what you are, it represents who you have worked to be. 


After each student is inducted, they are to recite the Honor code which restates all the highly important values. Jamie Kurzer says, “I pledge myself to uphold, The high purposes of the National Honor Society, to which I have been selected; I will be true to the principles for which it stands; I will be loyal to my school; And will maintain and encourage High standards of Scholarship, Service, Leadership, Character, and Citizenship.” This is to be repeated by the new inductees, as they say these words, a feeling of pride runs through their bodies. After the ceremony, Eric Wainer, a new inductee, says, “While I was reciting the words that were to be repeated, I felt pride, joy, and a feeling of self-respect towards myself. After the ceremony, my parents told me how proud they were of me, it really made me feel good.” This demonstrates the impact this ceremony has. However, it does not only affect the new inductees, but also the officers. Jaime Mizrahi, President of the Honor Society alleges, “A few years ago when I was first inducted, I would have never believed that I would be stating the names of the new inductees. It is an incredible feeling to stand on the stage and say these meaningful words. It made me realize why I worked so hard during these last few years.” 


This ceremony is not only important for the school, but more importantly it affects the students on a deep and personal level. It allows them to recognize how hard they have worked and motivates them to keep working hard.