WUSTL Speaks Shines at District Conference

Farzana Chohan and Rosalind Early
Farzana Chohan, District 8 governor, and Rosalind Early after the Humorous Speech contest

WUSTL Speaks member Rosalind Early took third place at the 2015 District 8 Humorous Speech Contest. It was the same speech she used to win the Staff Day Speech Showcase in May. She went on to present and win the area and division contests to get to the district competition.

“I think I’ll retire the speech now,” she said after the contest. “I know it now almost as well as I know the Pledge of Allegiance.”

She enjoyed speaking at the competition and gave a speech about how to compete at the next WUSTL Speaks meeting. “Competing is a lot of fun,” Rosalind said. “I hope that I inspired a few other club members to also compete.”

She hopes to also compete again and is already working on another speech.

“I loved developing my speech-giving skills. I think I’m a much more confident and comfortable speaker,” she says. “But it was also a lot of fun to practice. I would call my friends and co-workers and present the speech to them. It was a great way to re-connect with people, show off my stuff, and talk with people about my experiences with online dating.”

Rosalind wasn’t the only WUSTL Speaks member to shine at the District conference. Troy DeArmitt and John Richards presented the workshop “Talk Tech Better.” It was engaging, entertaining, well-attended and well-done. Troy and John had presented the workshop before at the summer Toastmasters Leadership Institute in June 2015 at Washington University. It was well-received then, and Troy and John refined the presentation even more for this conference. Troy expressed a wish to keep presenting the workshop maybe twice a year.

WUSTL Speaks also submitted a gift basket to the District 8 conference raffle. The theme was a humorous basket and included Me Talk Pretty One Day, a book by David Sedaris, Laffy Taffy, a whoopee cushion and other fun gifts. It sold for $40, which helped the conference organizers surpass their goal and raise over $1,000 for an inmate scholarship fund.

wustlspeaks members at the Dist 8 conference
From left: John Richards, Rebecca O’Laughlin, Rosalind Eary, Mary Clemens, Troy DeArmitt, and Martin Yoakum (who served as a timer for the humorous speech contest) after the competition.