The Oratorical Contest is the longest-running Optimist International program. This contest is designed for young people to gain experience in public speaking . Our Club-level Oratorical contest is planned for March 4, 2023 and will be held following the public health guidelines at that time.
Check back in the fall for information regarding our 2023-2024 contest.
Prepare and deliver a 4-5 minute speech on our 2023 topic: Discovering the Optimism within Me
First and Second place winners in our club contest can move on to compete for up to $22,500 in scholarships at the district, regional and international levels. Scholarships are funded by the Canadian Children’s Optimist Foundation.
- Eligibility Criteria:
- Open to students under the age of 19 as of October 1, 2022 and who have not yet completed secondary school. There is no minimum age.
- Contestants are eligible to enter/compete in only one Optimist Oratorical contest during a contest year.
- Contestants who win 1st place at the Regional level are ineligible to compete in subsequent years.
- Key Dates for 2023:
- February 25 (midnight) – Deadline to submit signed contest application form (by email or regular mail)
- March 3 – Deadline to submit a typed copy of speech (email)
- Saturday, March 4
- Contest Day – Optimistically we are planning on hosting an in-person event, but we will be prepared if a virtual contest is required.
- Winners provide copy of birth certificate or passport (required to move on to District level contest)
- Early April – Zone level contest
- First and Second place finishers in club contest are eligible to compete in the Zone (Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge) contest.
- Early May – District level contest
Download the following document for complete rules and the application form:
Do you have other questions? Email us.
2023 Oratorical & Essay Contest Results
On Saturday, March 3, contestants and their families dug themselves out from a winter storm to gather for our annual contest. We heard inspiring speeches from our Oratorical Contestants, making for difficult decisions for the Judges. This year’s topic for the speeches was “Discovering the Optimism within Me.” Following the Oratorical Contest speeches, our Essay Contest winner read her Essay on the 2023 topic, “Who is an Everyday Hero that Brings Out the Optimism in You?” .…
2022 Oratorical & Essay Contest Results
It was nice to be back in-person for our 2022 Contest Day. We heard inspiring speeches from our Oratorical Contestants, making it a difficult time for the Judges. This year’s topic for the speeches was “Staying Optimistic in Challenging Times.” Following the Oratorical Contest speeches, our Essay Contest winner read her Essay on the 2022 topic, “How Does an Optimistic Mindset Change My Tomorrow?” . Congratulations to all our participants and good luck to the contestants moving…
2021 Oratorical and Essay Competitions
Are you an aspiring author? Or perhaps enjoy public speaking? The Optimist Club of Waterloo North is looking for local students to participate in our annual Essay Contest and/or Oratorical Contest for the 2020-21 school year. Students in our area are being invited to showcase their writing and/or public speaking skills in our upcoming virtual events to be held in early 2021. Contestants will participate in a club-level contest and local winners move on to compete at…