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Commencement Roundups: From Yeshiva and Wake Forest to USC

Precious moments were expereince during the Omer period in May and June as schools held their commencements. Some Jewish wisdom was imparted to the graduates. These included speeches at the following schools:

Yeshiva University in Manhattan held its commencement in New Jersey. Former Israeli diplomat, Ambassador Yehuda Avner, delivered the keynote address and received an honorary doctorate.

At New York University, Janet Yellin, Chair of the Board of Governors of The U.S. Federal Reserve System spoke to the graduates at New York’s Yankee Stadium.

The University of Pennsylvania, which some think is nearly 50% Jewish, heard from Penn Alumnus and musician John Legend.

Congressman John Lewis spoke at Emory (some say it feel more like Long Island than Atlanta)

and Jordanian Senator Tayseer Alsmadi spoke at Utah State University

Steve Ballmer (hey, his mom is Jewish) former CEO of Microsoft, spoke at USC in Los Angeles.

and Marc Benioff (Salesforce.com) also spoke at USC.

Elon Musk spoke at… no wait… he is Amish, not Jewish, and I always confuse the two since seeing The Frisco Kid in a theatre as a child. (Same for Seth Myers… I will exclude him, even though everyone, including his siblings, think he is Jew-ish)

Tory Burch, a designer and CEO of 150 retail fashion stores, spoke to graduates of Babson:

while Abe Foxman spoke at Suffolk University (in the face of some students who walked out of the exercies rather than listen to him)

Rebecca Rubin delivered an adress to Mary Washington graduates

while Jill Abramson, the former Executive Editor of The New York Times, delivered an address to Wake Forest graduates and talked about overcoming adversity – a week after being fired from her job.

The educator, Geoffrey Canada, spoke at Brandeis:

Sheryl Sandberg (Facebook.com) leaned into Harvard at Class Day at delivered one of the funniest addresses.

And Michael Bloomberg spoke at Havard’s commencement

Minister of the Knesset MK Dr. Ruth Calderon at purim party that is the Jewish Theological Seminary commencement:

And Rabbi Josh Synder’s benediction at Goucher that quotes Pirke Avot:

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