The Frederiksted Twin City Lions Club (the Club) recently welcomed four students to its annual speech competition, which was held on April 28, at the Henry Rohlsen Airport Cruise Lounge. The participating students represented St. Patrick’s Catholic School, Church of God (Holiness) Academy and the John Woodson Junior High School.
Students were asked to prepare a 5 to 7-minute speech on “What is Climate Change and What Can You Do to Reduce It?” They were evaluated in different areas to include content and delivery.
Alani Arnold, an eighth grader from the St. Patrick’s Catholic School, won first place for her speech; Maliah Henry, representing the Church of God of God (Holiness) Academy, placed second; Angelina Springer, an eighth grader at the John Woodson Junior High School, took third place. Honorable mention went to Khamani Ferris, a seventh grader at the St. Patrick’s Catholic School. All of them spoke eloquently about the dangers of climate change and offered well thought out recommendations to combat it.
All competitors received prizes for their participation. The winner received a new laptop; second place received a new tablet; third place received $75; honorable mention received $25.
Prizes were presented to the four students by Rafael A. Llanos Jr., president of the Frederiksted Twin City Lions Club, and Lion Susannah Simmonds, coordinator of the competition. The judges were Wilfredo Guzman, Shawna Richards and Lorna Sutton. Shevvin Fleming was the timekeeper and Yvonne Pryce kept the tally. Members of the Twin City Lions Alpha Leos Club, a youth group serving ages 12 to 18, served as ushers for the program.
The Club has hosted the speech competition since 2011. According to Lion Danielle deChabert, the competition was created to give students greater exposure to public speaking, which can be a useful tool as they pursue their education and careers. “Every year, we are simply amazed at the speeches that are presented by our participants. We have great talent in our local schools, and we are honored to provide a platform that allows us to showcase our students’ ability,” said Lion Cheryl Jeremiah-Ambrose.
This year’s winner, Alani Arnold, joins an illustrious group of students who have previously won the speech competition. Previous winners are Aleeyah Milligan (2011), Aliyah Allick (2012), Kaliah Stanley (2013), Kayla Williams (2014) and Michael Vidal Bell (2015).