Youth Speaker 2008

 Hornsby district students scored two of the top three places in the Youth

Speaker of the Year Final on Tuesday 16th September. Eleven finalists from schools

across Sydney competed in the public speaking event at Burwood RSL Club.

 Isaac Freelander from Normanhorst Boys’ High won first place, with a witty 4

minute speech on the topic of Political Correctness, arguing that despite

good intentions it had gone too far.

Second place went to Cassie Wright of Roseville College, with a comical and

uplifting speech, “Gross Domestic Happiness.”

  

Miriam Barnes of Hornsby Girls’ High School urged people to “throw down the

Ipod shackles” and start communicating and connecting with real life in her

talk, “I came, I saw, Ipod.”

 The winners received prize money of $350, $100 and $50, as well as vouchers

for online games from 3rd Sense.

Contestants had earlier taken part in the Speak Up! Speak Out! Training

workshop, a model designed to encourage students to speak from the heart, to

enhance body language and vocal variety. Two semi-final competitions (hosted

by Parramatta Town Hall and Hornsby Council Chambers) whittled the total

entrants down to the final 11 students, who could choose any issue, cause or

social problem as the topic of a 4-minute speech.

Last year’s winner, Jake Nelson, from Muirfield High School, gave a

diverting account of how his public speaking skills are proving an asset in

many areas of his life. He then presented Isaac Freelander, this year’s

winner, with the perpetual SpeakersBank Youth Speaker of the Year trophy.

In an informal impromptu competition, Cassie Wright won a book and vouchers

with a speech on her ideal holiday in space.

 

 Judges commended all participants on their poise, eloquence and preparation.

“Just taking part is a learning experience,” Dale Rees-Bevan of SpeakersBank

said as she thanked students, their families and sponsors for supporting

Youth Speaker of the Year.

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