A wonderful evening of memories and celebrating Yeshivah – Beth Rivkah College’s journey to 70 years young was held at St Kilda Town Hall on Sunday 26th May 2019. With a near 600-strong crowd of alumni, former and current teachers and School Principals in attendance, it was truly a celebration of seven decades of enduring friendships, inspiring teachers, and the spirit of what it means to be an alumni of Yeshivah – Beth Rivkah.
Attendees mingled whilst savoring a delicious cocktail supper, wine and drinks, and took ‘a walk down memory lane’, poring over a serious of photo collages created to mark this special occasion. Smiles, laughter and joyous greetings filled the hall, with an atmosphere that can only come from old friends reacquainting.
The evening’s formalities were guided by Rabbi Reuvi Cooper (a past Yeshivah student) with speeches from past principals and students, video presentations and messages engaging the crowd.
Former Beth Rivkah Principal, Mr Gurewicz, reminisced about key moments of his principalship, and thanked his students for what they had taught him. He remarked to the crowd of alumni that “Yeshivah and Beth Rivkah were your furnaces [of knowledge], to give you heat [faith] to last a lifetime”. Beth Rivkah graduate Dorit Portnoi outlined her journey to become a Beth Rivkah student and her daughter’s uncannily similar path, while Yeshivah College alumni Eli Vayn highlighted memorable moments and friends who helped him along the way during his schooling. Both students expressed their gratitude to the schools for guiding and shaping them to the people they are today.
A stunning video containing footage from the very early days of Yeshivah, as well as snippets of Beth Rivkah and Yeshivah through the years was interspersed with personal accounts from old collegians outlining their favorite memories from school, funny anecdotes and stories and memories of teachers, events and highlights. The crowd erupted in laughter at various points, and were enthralled to hear about and see the school in its early days and how much it has grown and flourished.
Current Principal, Rabbi Yehoshua Smukler, concluded the evening by recounting some humorous anecdotes and his hopes for the continued success of the schools.
Despite the official program coming to a close, the evening continued with many attendees remaining as they continued to catch up with old friends, former teachers and familiar faces from their school days.