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Iyar 5778 | April 2018  

Baruch Hashem, the 2017-2018 year has been truly extraordinary thus far.  Our talmidim are shteiging and thriving in both Judaic and General Studies, as well as clearly and tangibly growing, slowly and steadily, in middos and mussar. As mechanchim, this is our biggest accomplishment and nachas, and it's so heartwarming to see, and to share with you. 
Drumroll please...we are excited to announce that after many years, much effort, and a lot of siyata dishmaya, FTI has obtained the permits necessary to build our much-needed new building. FTI plans to break ground on our first major phase of construction this summer after our students leave for summer break. See article below for details and stay tuned for our groundbreaking event.
Additional exciting FTI developments include hiring a new general studies curriculum coordinator, as well as having multiple students compete in the Intel International Science Fair.  Our new STEM and bekiyus kriah programs have been very well received by our students, translating into increased learning on all fronts.  
Our incoming 9th grade class is close to reaching capacity once again this year.  With successful open houses, a fantastic 8th grade shabbaton, and frequent site visits by prospective students, FTI's incoming 9th grade looks very promising, both in quality and quantity.
Much of the credit for our success in educating now over 80 bachurim is directly due to you, our supporters and friends, who continue to sustain our Yeshiva, especially through this exciting growth phase. So please, take a read at your convenience and shep some nachas from your tzedaka dollars at work!

D'var Torah Corner
Parshas Kedoshim
Human Greatness

The first pasuk in Parshas Kedoshim says, “Kedoshim Te’he’yu... Ki Kadosh Ani...” “You shall be holy... I am holy.”  The Medrash Rabbah explains that one might have mistakenly thought that a person could attain the same level of holiness as Hashem. The pasuk then teaches us that Hashem’s holiness is beyond a person’s ability to attain.
This Medrash is difficult to understand. How could a person possibly have thought that a human being could become as holy as Hashem? Hashem is the source of all holiness and spirituality? 
Our Rebbe, Rav Henoch Leibowitz zt’l, explained that the Medrash gives us a glimpse into the true greatness of man. A person is created with a neshama (soul) with the ability to reach such incredible heights of kedusha and perfect himself to the extent that he can be confused with G-d Himself. 
At FTI we teach and try to inculcate in our students this concept and the words of the Rambam that everyone can become a tzadik like Moshe Rabeinu, and masai yegia masai lemasai avosai as a guiding hashkafa. In fact, Rabeinu Yonah in Sharei Teshuva writes that our first line of defense against our yetzer hara is the knowledge of our incredible self-worth and innate holiness, more than all the mussar and yiras shomayim. May we all be zoche to a clear and deep understanding of our true greatness and merit the coming of Moshiach speedily in our days.
Nachas Note
We sometimes receive complimentary 
letters or emails from people who have interactions with our students. This one was particularly interesting....
Click here to read what an inspired man had to say after he met two FTI Bais Medrash bachurim over 1,000 miles from Cherry Hill.
Upcoming Events
  • April 25 - CoCo Keys Trip
  • May 3 - Lag Ba'omer Outing
  • May 4-5 - NYC Shabbaton
  • May 30-31 - Spring Trip 
  • June 19 - Graduation
Thank you to all students, parents, volunteers, and of course, our generous matchers and 1,281 donors for making our Charidy campaign raising $613 a huge success. Click here to see our campaign page.
FTI Wishes Mazel Tov to...
  • Rabbi & Rebbitzen Yitzchok Shmidman (FTI's Dorm Mashgaich and Rebbe) on the birth of a baby boy. Mazal Tov to the extended Max and Shmidman families.
  • Yoisef Kahn ('14) on his engagement to Ester Marsh from Baltimore.
  • The Epstein and Miller (Milwaukee) families on the marriage of Rena and Gedalia.
FTI Daily Minyan Schedule
Sun 8:00 a.m.
Mon-Fri 7:40 a.m. 
Sun - 1:45, 2:45 p.m.
Mon-Thu 2:15 p.m., 2:45 p.m.
Sun-Thu 9:45 p.m.
Erev Shabbos Mincha - 15 min. before Shkia
Shacharis 8:30 a.m.
Mincha - 5:00 p.m.
Maariv - 60 minutes after Shkia
Please Help Support our Growing Yeshiva
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Photo Gallery
Voluntary, late night, post-seder learning on the laws of proper speech.
Rosh Chodesh Iyar Breakfast Kumzitz.
Mr. Bob Slurzberg, a professional tutor and former FTI teacher, preparing 11th graders for the SAT/ACT exams.
Rabbi Kramer meeting with FTI Educational Consultant Rabbi Mechel Rottenberg, of Mayan HaChinuch.
Rabbi Bienenfeld, Rav of Young Israel of Cherry Hill, speaking to the FTI Mesivta. 
Rabbi Shmidman and FTI dormers on a dorm trip.
Talmidim playing football on the FTI sports field during their lunch break.
FTI dormers celebrating a group siyum.
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Permits Are In, Construction Begins...
Site Clearing to Make Room for Phase 1 Modular Addition to Bais Medrash Building
On the night of February 5th, 2018, the Cherry Hill Township Planning Board unanimously approved our major site plan to construct a 35,000 square foot new building. The modern and spacious new facility will consist of a bais medrash, classrooms, dining facilities,  dormitories, a gym and recreation center, offices, lounges, and more, housing a student body of up to 150 talmidim. 
Phase 1 temporary construction expanding our current Bais Medrash has already begun, with Phase 2 construction of the dormitory wing and gym set to begin in July of 2018, and Phase 3 main building construction set to start in July 2019.      
As the only Jewish high school in all of Southern New Jersey, this is a very important milestone in our community's development and future growth. FTI sincerely appreciates all those who have helped the yeshiva reach this point and is actively looking for enablers who believe in the Yeshiva and the impact it is having on its students, the greater community, and Klal Yisrael to get behind the project and help it become a reality. 
If you are interested in learning more about this exciting project, please contact Rabbi Davidowitz in the yeshiva office.

FTI in High Demand
Incoming Freshman Class Is Almost Full
Once again, for the fourth consecutive year, FTI is expecting to close out enrollment for the incoming freshman class. Our applicants are primarily from local areas and regional cities such as Kew Gardens Hills, Far Rockaway and Five Towns, Brooklyn, Lakewood, Monsey, and Passaic. 
Some highlights from our recruiting department events held this year include a packed Cherry Hill Open House, our NYC open house, and our annual 8th grade Shabbaton (pictured above).
There are still a few remaining spaces left in our incoming 9th grade class; if you are interested in applying or learning more please click here or call the Yeshiva office before it's too late.

Advancing FTI's General Studies Curriculum
FTI Names General Studies Curriculum Coordinator, Mr. Michael Morgenstern
FTI is excited to share that Mr. Michael Morgenstern recently joined the administration as our new General Studies Curriculum Coordinator. Mr. Morgenstern, already one of FTI's highly regarded English Language teachers, will use his passion and expertise to examine and improve FTI's curriculum applying the latest content and teaching models.
Mr. Morgenstern's goals include "Strengthening communication skills and creative thinking skills to better prepare students to teach themselves in the information age, and better prepare students for job challenges requiring collaboration with others and independent thinking."
Mr. Morgenstern will also be focused on ensuring students are challenged to become the best that they can be. Additionally, Mr. Morgenstern is excited to enhance FTI's honors courses.
As FTI continues to grow, Mr. Morgenstern "is excited to do his part to help such a thriving institution continue to improve its academic offerings."

FTI Students Attend Intel Science Competition
Multiple Students Submit Projects...Two Receive Awards
FTI students attended the first round of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair last month. FTI is one of the only Yeshivos that endeavors to compete with the area’s finest science students in this international competition, sponsored by Coriell Institute (a prominent international cell bank and biological research center in Camden). 
Students chose a research topic, created a professional style poster-board of their project, and presented their project before a panel of judges. Additionally, students needed to substantiate and submit their research with ongoing journal articles and documentation about their project. 
Submitting projects in the fair is a tremendous accomplishment. 300 of the top students in the area worked for months to prepare for the fair. Students with outstanding projects were eligible to advance to regional and national competitions. Prizes for winners included scholarships, cash, internships, and summer jobs.
FTI submissions included automating the CPR procedure for EMT crews in ambulances, creating a solar-powered drone, and using a laser light beam to produce visual shapes.  
Two of FTI students, Yonatan Chiver (Lakewood) and Dov Aryeh Presby (Monsey) received awards, and were invited to the regional competition. Unfortunately, they were unable to participate in the regional competition because it conflicted with Pesach, but we are certainly proud of them and all of our students' accomplishments!

FTI Launches Pesach Bein Hazmanim Learning, Chazara, and Daveninig Initiative
More Than 400 Amudim Reviewed... More than 300 Hours of Extra Learning
Over Pesach bein hazmanim, the FTI Mesivta launched a multi-faceted chazara (reviewing), and davening program. Thanks to our generous sponsors, monetary incentives, gift cards, and lunch with your rebbe (at a restaurant) were offered to talmidim who learned daily and davened all tefilos with a minyan.
B”H, most of our talmidim participated on various levels with the recorded totals coming in at over 400 amudim of Gemara reviewed and over 300 hours learned (in truth, even more were actually learned, but many talmidim wanted the mitzvah lishma and didn’t claim their prize!).
Students chose between Gemara, mussar, Chumash, and halacha; the more hours learned the greater the incentive. Several students reported that they reached the highest incentive possible, 24 hours of learning over 16 days, B”H.
Thanks to this program, not only was there more learning over bein hazmanim, but there was a lot of positive momentum that carried over from last z’man straight through through the Pesach break, facilitating a strong start to the new z’man.

Update on FTI's Newest Programs
STEM and Bekiyus Reading Program Are Yielding Tremendous Results
At the beginning of the 2017-2018 school, year FTI launched two brand new major academic programs.  FTI’s new Bekiyus Reading Program and STEM. The bekiyus program includes in-class reading exercises with a chavrusa, reading for the class, comprehensive word lists, reading-based questions on quizzes and tests, and the reading chazara incentive element. Thanks to several generous sponsors, FTI students receive $5 when they correctly read, translate, and explain an amud of Gemara in front of a rebbe in five minutes or less. Ninety-five percent of the student body has earned this incentive already with many hundreds of amudim read B”H!
FTI also launched our new 9th and 10th grade STEM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) in conjunction with CIJE (Center of Initiatives for Jewish Education).  Students are enjoying learning about electrical engineering, electricity, light, and coding.  Our STEM students are working on a semester-long project where they are tasked to design and create a prototype of an electrical engineering-based invention.  Students will present their invention at a culminating event hosted by STEM's sponsoring organization, the Center of Initiatives for Jewish Education. Some of the projects FTI students are working on include a solar charger which will shift based on the location of the sun, eye-glasses that sense objects in front of the viewer, garbage dumpsters that will sense and communicate when the dumpster is full, among others.
Next year, we are planning to offer even more exciting learning opportunities to our students. Please contact Rabbi Kramer or the FTI office if you would like to enable or sponsor a new program for the upcoming academic year.

FTI School Stats
  • 9th grade IYUN has been solidifying Tosfos cheshbon skills as they learn through Maseches Gittin.
  • 12th grade ENGLISH began a new novel, Orson Scott Card’s classic, Ender’s Game.
  • 11th grade PHYSICS was introduced to the properties of electric currents
  • 9th grade S.T.E.M. examined different types of sensors for the capstone project. 
  • 11th grade ENGLISH is having lively classroom discussions relating to Markus Zusak’s new classic, The Book Thief.
  • 12th grade IYUN and Bais Medrash talmidim traveled to Chofetz Chaim in Queens for a pilpul shiur on the topic of eidei mesira karti after preparing for a week for this amazing experience.
  • 9th grade ALGEBRA II studied percentages in the context of purchases and sales tax.
  • 12th grade IYUN defended the Rambam's shita in the sugya of zimra in Gittin.
  • 9th grade IYUN has been having heated milchamto shel torah between talmidim on a daily basis. 
  • The ENTIRE YESHIVA began the 4th perek of Gitten, perek HaSholeach after Pesach.
  • 11th grade PHYSICS developed conservation models with kinetic, gravitational, and elastic potential.
  • 11th grade US HISTORY II explored D-Day, the invasion of Germany by allied and Russian forces, and the bombing of Japan.
  • 12th grade CHUMASH finished the conversation between Moshe Rabbeinu and Hashem pertaining to the 7 reasons why Moshe thought he was not fit to take Klal Yisrael out of Mitzrayim.
  • 9th grade WORLD HISTORY studied the effects of the American, French, and Mexican Revolutions, the New World, and the abolishment of slavery in the United States.
  • 10th Grade CHUMASH did an in-depth study of the impact on Klal Yisrael of the conflict between Yaakov and Eisav.
  • GUITAR ELECTIVE students are working on the art of properly strumming guitar chords.
  • 11th grade MUSSAR started Mesilas Yesharim after Pesach.
  • FTI DORMERS had a vaad on the topic of taking responsibility for one's self.
  • 9th grade BEKIYUS finished the 3rd perek of Megillah.
FTI seeks to engage the intellect and emotion of every student and produce talmidim distinguished by their dedication to ongoing Torah study, commitment to personal character development, and responsibility to Klal Yisrael.

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