July 3, 2017

Expanding optimism with speech

In 2016, Optimist International updated its oldest program: the Optimist International Oratorical Contest. Started in 1928, the oratorical contest has always asked students to write and speak on a single topic. The contest would begin at the Optimist Club level and end with a scholarship award for the first place contestant at the District level.

The 2016 update moved the contest beyond the Optimist Club. In conjunction with St. Louis University, a global category was added to include persons where Optimist Clubs are not yet formed.

It then rebranded the contest to be the Optimist International Oratorical World Championships and added an international level to the competition where all District winners could go on to compete for additional $20,000 in scholarship prizes.

The contest has been well received and participation seems to be increasing. Please enjoy a look at the 2017 Optimist International Oratorical World Championships with this video.

The topic in 2018 is "Where are My Roots of Optimism?" Students under age 18, we encourage you to find an Optimist Club near you and get involved.


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