The annual Rostrum Public Speaking ACT competition was held in Cooma on Monday, 4th June. Emily Willsmer from Year 6 represented our Junior School, having been chosen from our Year 5 and Year 6 students. Each student developed their own speech over the past term based on topics that the Rostrum organisation sends to all participating schools. Emily’s topic was ‘It was worth it’. Winners from the in-school competition then make it to the quarter-finals and compete against other speakers from schools within the region. Emily competed against four other speakers and was the worthy choice to move forward into the semi-finals, which will be held in August in Canberra. Emily is only the second speaker from SMGS to advance through to the semi-finals, following Lara Fairfield-Smith who is currently in Year 12.

Emily delivered a confident speech that was so well rehearsed she was able to speak without the use of palm cards. Her content was strong and she delivered a heartfelt message about being willing to push yourself to take part and participate in life. She referenced the well-known stories of the Jamaican bobsled team and Eddie the Eagle, while also making a point to show that offering a kind word or a gesture is equal to the Olympic feats of some, and is always worth it!

Year 5 student Blake Bell attended the event as a non-competitive speaker and he spoke during the adjudication of the five competitive speakers. This is an opportunity for speakers who showed potential during the in-school competition to have a chance to speak in front of an audience outside of school.