March 11, 2019

Alberta District Japanese Speech Contest 2019

Three prizes won by SLLLC students with impressive speeches in this year’s Speech Contest
Alberta District Japanese Speech Contest 2019
Alberta District Japanese Speech Contest 2019

This year’s annual Alberta District Japanese Speech Contest was held at the University of Alberta on Saturday, March 2nd, 2019, with 10 participants from the University of Calgary out of 25 total contestants.

Participants prepared and memorized speeches to present, with the help of the University of Calgary’s Japanese Program (School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures) instructors, X. Jie Yang, Akiko Sharp, Yoko Kodama, and Hitomi Krebes. Students were able to practice their speeches with students from various universities from Japan as well. The event was a great opportunity for students to improve their skills in Japanese.

All participants gave their all in refining their speeches and delivered them to the judges with pride. This year, four students from the Japanese program at the University of Calgary took places within the top three for their entered categories. Well done to all participants from the University of Calgary this year!

In the Beginner category, Cindy Xia reminisced her experiences having asian parents with “loves you? Loves you not?” (video) and was presented with the first place prize.

Cindy Xia and the judges

Cindy Xia and the judges

In the Advanced category, Michelle Lee presented her speech “Learning from differences” (video), about adjusting to and learning to appreciate different cultures after moving to Canada. She won the third place prize.

In the Open category, Frank Chen presented a well-written speech on the human condition and the Japanese folklore monster “oni”. His speech “Hideous, yet Extraordinary” (video) won the first place prize.

This year’s speeches covered a lot of interesting topics, and were very impressive and moving. Congratulations to all participants for their great efforts and growth from the speech contest, and thank you to the Japanese instructors, and interns who have dedicated their time and effort into coaching and preparing for this event. First place winners Frank Chen and Cindy Xia will be heading to Nationals in Ottawa on Sunday, March the 24th, to again present their speeches at the National Japanese Speech Contest. Good luck to both contestants at Nationals!

A word of gratitude again for the Japanese instructors, X. Jie Yang, Akiko Sharp, Yoko Kodama, and Hitomi Krebes for encouraging students to take this step to improve their Japanese, and wholeheartedly supporting them them entire way. Thank you to the interns from Senshu University and Hokkaido University of Education for their help in coaching the participants. Your time was invaluable to the students entering this event.

Thank you to the judges, who gave wonderful feedback and inspired students to continue their efforts in studying the Japanese Language!


Cindy Kelin Xia: Loves you? Loves you not?


Michelle Lee: Learning from differences


Yuyang (Frank) Chen: 4.2 Hideous, yet Extraordinary