Student speakers make their case and conquer fears

Tamra CarrGeraldton Guardian

A Geraldton Grammar School student has come second in a speech competition in Perth.

Year 11 student Ciedele Mezger wrote a six-minute speech criticising the “outdated” school curriculum, which earned her first place in the recent Rotary Four Way Test Speech Competition regional heat.

Ciedele delivered her speech at the Perth semifinals and will now prepare to present again at the district final at the end of March.

Classmate and regional heat runner-up Anna Nguyen wrote her speech on the differences between the developed world and developing world and also participated in the semifinals.

As part of the competition rules, Ciedele and Anna had to prove their beliefs to be true, fair, beneficial and leading to goodwill and better friendships.

Each student gave advice on how to conquer fears of public speaking.

“I’m not really the type to speak out, I’m a bit of an introvert,” Anna said.

“So, I thought this would be a good opportunity to put my ideas across.

“Don’t worry about stuffing up in front of people, do some breathing exercises and relax.”

Confident public speaker Ciedele said nervous speakers should remember that most people are anxious when they speak in front of audiences.

“I really like speaking, I’m a drama student and I find if you’re a good-quality public speaker, it helps make you a good leader,” she said. “Just remember to relax, people most likely aren’t judging you, as they’re probably nervous about public speaking too.”

Students from Strathalbyn Christian College and Geraldton Senior College also participated in the regional heat.

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