Student Speaker Challenge continues

The second of four quarter-final sessions of the Student Speaker Challenge is ready to go, Tuesday, Jan. 19, 12:15 p.m. in Ballroom A of the Students' Union.

The annual event is in its second year and with eight talented student speakers taking part, has begun to capture an audience and, at the same time, some profile on campus.

"It's a very valuable place for students at all levels and stages of their university careers to develop their public speaking and presentation skills and to generally be able to stand up to audience scrutiny in a positive way," says Alex Masse, University of Lethbridge Students' Union vice-president academic.
"We learned last year that if we put an effort into recruiting good students, we get very good speakers and I believe we've got an excellent lineup this year."

The How Education Benefits the World Student Speaker Challenge is a collaboration of the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs (SACPA), the Lethbridge Public Interest Research Group (LPIRG), and the Students' Union (ULSU), with support from the University of Lethbridge.

The challenge began Jan. 13 when speakers James Falconer and Selin Bilgin squared off in the first quarter-final, addressing the question, "What is the value of post-secondary education to the world?" After making 15-minute presentations, each speaker then opened the floor to another 15 minutes of questioning from the assembled audience as well as the three-person panel of judges. Falconer was declared the winner of the first matchup and will advance to the semifinal sessions, Feb. 23 and Mar. 2.

The final session will be Tuesday, Mar. 9, 7 p.m. at Andy's Place. The winner of the event will receive a $500 award, second place $300 and third place $100. All sessions are open to the public.

"It's the old style, classic Greek conception of the University," says Falconer, a fourth-year sociology major. "The stadium, the discourse, the back-and-forth dialectic, that's what I thrive on and this is a wonderful example."

Following is the challenge lineup.

Session Schedule

Session 2
- Tuesday, Jan. 19 at 12:15 p.m. in Ballroom A, SUB
Speakers - Cashe Erskine and Keith McLaughlin

Session 3 - Wednesday, Jan. 27 at 12:15 p.m. in Galileo's, SUB
Speakers - Vanessa Lodermeier and Keith Gardner

Session 4 - Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 12:15 p.m. in Galileo's, SUB
Speakers - Kate Nesbitt and Saikat Basu

Semifinal Sessions
Tuesday, Feb. 23 at 4:30 p.m. in Galileo's, SUB
Tuesday, Mar. 2 at 4:30 p.m. in Galileo's, SUB
Speakers - TBA

Final Session - Tuesday, Mar. 9 at 7 p.m. in Andy's Place (AH100)