Sep 12, 2012
New Seminary in Los Angeles
Why travel abroad when you have California? The daughter of "The Rosh" Rabbi Ezra Schochet is opening a new Chabad girls seminary in Los Angeles, COLlive has learned.
By COLlive reporter
The modest yet towering figure of Rebbetzin Rochel Schochet OBM has been a source of inspiration and counsel for many in the Chabad community in Los Angeles and beyond for over 40 years.
Exuding warmth and genuine concern while emphasizing the importance of yiras shamayim, davening and tznius, she implanted in her students true pride in living as Bnos Melech.
Her tragic passing 2 years ago will not put an end to that positive influence.
COLlive.com has learned that her daughter, Mrs. Hadassa Spalter, an educator known for her dynamism and strong command of the classroom, is opening up a new Chabad girls' seminary in Los Angeles.
The new Ohel Sara Institute of Higher Learning is named after the late Rebbetzin Sara Rochel Schochet OBM, wife of Rabbi Ezra Schochet, the revered Rosh Yeshivas Ohr Elchanan Chabad.
"Ohel Sara will provide the nurturing soil in which the deeply-held values that Rebbetzin Schochet dedicated her life to, can take root in students and enable them to build their futures on a solid foundation," Spalter said.
She said, "there is a pressing need for additional top-of-the-line seminaries, and what better place to establish one than in our already flourishing community?"
Spalter will be the seminary's principal, with Chanie Pinson serving as educational director. Both are committed to a solid, genuine, yet well-rounded seminary experience.
"The main objective of the seminary is in fact to help facilitate the privilege and responsibility of leadership that was entrusted to our girls," Pinson told COLlive.com.
Pinson said her upbringing in Crown Heights, experiencing the Rebbe's farbrengens, sichos and dollars of the late 80s and early 90s is her inspiration.
"The Rebbe really empowered us women to be leaders in our own homes and in our communities," says Pinson, former Principal of General Studies at Cheder Menachem and Navi teacher at Bais Chana high school, both in Los Angeles.
Distinguished Rabbonim and top educators in California have already signed on to join the staff to provide both the scholarship and the mentoring that a young adult needs to thrive.
Among them are the Valley's Head Shliach Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon, posek Rabbi Yosef Shusterman, Rabbi Moshe Kesselman of congregation Shaarei Tefilla, Rabbi Reuven Wolf of Maayon Yisroel Chassidic Center and Rabbi Dov Wagner of Chabad at USC.
Also joining are Devorie Kreiman, former principal of Bais Rebbe Junior High School in Los Angeles, lecturer and counselor Chana Rachel Schusterman, veteran teacher Sara Shusterman and school psychologist Devora Zheutlin.
Chabad girls who would otherwise travel to Israel for the seminary experience are promised fabulous California trips, Shabbatons and Farbrengens that will enrich their lives.
The beauty of Southern California, the year-round sunshine, the proximity to the mountains, ocean and desert might also be a draw.
"We are the second largest Jewish community in the United States with Shuls, Mikvaos, Yeshivas and Kosher restaurants in abundance," Spalter points out.
"We will be recreating Eretz Yisroel here with our fabulous program," Pinson states.
For more info, visit http://laseminary.com/.