Capstone Project: Finding Your Voice Through Passion

Finding Your Voice Through Passion was a Middle School Speech and Competition that took place on January 25, 2020 at James River High School. The event was created by Shavon Walton, a senior in the Leadership and International Relations Center, who wanted to create an opportunity for middle schoolers to express themselves on topics that they are passionate about to discover their voices and prospective change on the world. Additionally, she wanted to introduce them to the world of Speech and Debate with the hopes that they will continue to compete in high school. Her inspiration stemmed from her own experience on the James River Speech and Debate team with the support of her many teammates, in and out of the school. With a total of fourteen participants from two schools, Finding Your Voice Through Passion was a huge success!

Competitors began preparing in the early fall months leading up to the actual competition in January. Categories that were offered were Congressional Debate, Declamation Speech, Impromptu Speech, and more! These are some categories that many prospective Leadership students will be familiar with once they go through the Communications class sophomore year.

With a total of fourteen participants from two schools, Finding Your Voice Through Passion was a huge success! Shavon Walton could not have done it with the support of her wonderful volunteers, student judges from surrounding Speech and Debate teams, and the participation of the competitors and coaches. Finding Your Voice Through Passion was an incredible opportunity for so many young students bound to change the world, and it was an honor for her to create it!


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