QC wins speech contest
TOP PRIZE WINNER Khaleel Kothdiwala (centre) of Queen’s College, second-placed Alexandria Harper (third right) of The Lodge School, and Combermere’s Zahra Trotman, who was third, with teachers and US Embassy officials. (PR)
QUEEN’S COLLEGE (QC) walked away with the top prize in the recent United States Embassy-organised Black History Month Secondary Schools Speech Competition.
Twelve schools took part in the contest, which saw students delivering outstanding speeches on a variety of topics on issues surrounding race, and African American culture and history.
QC fifth-former Khaleel Kothdiwala took the top prize with his speech discussing whether literary classics containing racist tones and/ or racially offensive language should be removed from schools’ reading lists.
Second place went to Lodge School fifth-former Alexandria Harper, while Combermere fourth-former Zahra Trotman placed third.
The top prize was an HP all-in-one computer. The top three students and supervising teachers received a prize package that included a trophy, laptops, electronic tablets, Bluetooth speakers, and selected books on public speaking and great speeches in American and world history.
A panel comprising US Embassy officials judged the competitors, who also included students from Springer Memorial School, The St Michael School, Princess Margaret, Christ Church Foundation, Deighton Griffith School, Coleridge & Parry, Alleyne, The Ellerslie School and Harrison College.
In opening remarks, Deputy Chief of Mission of the United States Embassy to Barbados, Joaquin Monserrate, gave the students some insight into the origins of Black History Month. He noted that speech and debate made up a vital part of America’s cultural fabric, and highlighted the impressive legacy of powerful black orators in the US.
The contest supported the US Embassy’s goal of promoting education as a driver of sustainable economic growth, and as a means to foster innovation and empower the youth.