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Rotary Club English competition set for May

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The 2013 English Speech Contest sponsored by the Rotary Club of Taipei will commence on May 18, with the event welcoming Taiwan university students who hold R.O.C. passports.

The top prize is a seven-week English course in Australia and round-trip airfares.

The chair of the 2013 English Speech Contest, Bruce Yang, said the objectives of the contest are to encourage native Mandarin-speaking students to improve and use their spoken English, and allow them to challenge themselves by building greater intercultural awareness.

Yang said this is the 58th year that the Rotary Club of Taipei has sponsored an English speech event, adding that over the years thousands of students in Taiwan have benefited from the opportunities provided by the experience.

The speech contest consists of three rounds on May 18, Yang said, adding that students will deliver the same prepared speech in the first and second rounds of the contest.

Based on previous experience, eight successful contestants will progress to the final round, where they will be asked to deliver a three-minute impromptu speech on a given topic or video, Yang said.

The judging criteria include the speech's content, which is defined as the speaker's ability to cogently and logically present the theme and argument of the speech.

Panelists will judge the speakers' delivery based on the objectives, originality and creativity, and speakers' confidence and passion.

The criteria will also include choice of words, grammar, pronunciation and overall English fluency.

The contest provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate their competency in spoken English, as well as their ability to think and respond creatively, Yang said.

Scholarships to Australia

The first prize is a scholarship for a seven-week English course at ANU College over the summer. The college is located on the campus of Australian National University in the city of Canberra.

The second prize is a five-week English course at the University of Canberra. Both prizes include round-trip airfare and homestay accommodation.

In addition to the top two prizes, a number of four- to six-week internships at the British Chamber of Commerce, International Community Radio Taiwan (ICRT) and selected Taiwan companies will be awarded.

The 2013 English Speech Contest will be held at the Primary School Campus of the Taipei European School in Shihlin District. The deadline for registration is May 8.

For more information, speech topics and registration forms visit: https://sites.google.com/site/2013rctesc.

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