EAU Student Earns 2nd Place at Regional Speech Contest

EAU Student Earns 2nd Place at Regional Speech Contest
Posted on 02/24/2014
Recently, EAU sophomore Nicole Winans participated in this year's annual Optimist Club speech contest at the Renaissance Restaurant for our local, regional area.Her speech was written on the assigned topic, "How My Passions Impact the World." Nicole received 2nd place! Way to go, Nicole!

You can read Nicole's award-winning speech here:

How My Passions Impact the World

Today I want to introduce you to a young boy named Michael.  Now, you don't need to look for him.  I didn't bring him with me, but I would like to tell you his story.  Growing up, Michael wanted to do everything just like his brother Larry.  Michael and Larry were like peanut butter and jelly, ketchup and mustard.  When Larry would go outside, Michael wanted to go outside.  When Larry would work on homework, Michael would work on homework.  And of course, when Larry began to play basketball... Guess what? Michael began to play basketball. 

But when Larry moved on to something new, something strange happened.  Michael didn't follow.  He stuck with basketball.  In fact, he liked it so much, that he decided to try out for the high school varsity team.  But the coaches did not think he had what it took.  Imagine Michael's devastation when he was cut from the team.  Now, what do you think?  Did he give up?

No, Michael was determined.  He was motivated to try harder.  That summer, he devoted himself to practicing basketball-- shooting hoops, dribbling in the driveway, and even watching the pros on TV. 

Then, that next school year, Michael’s hard work and determination paid off.  He not only made the team but was a star player.  And he didn’t stop there.  Michael chased his passion and went on to play college basketball and then made it to the NBA. 

Do you know Michael?  Today, many consider Michael Jordan as the greatest basketball player of all time.  But imagine what would have happened if he hadn’t followed his passion.  If after falling down once, he never got back up onto his feet.

Michael Jordan did much more than play basketball.  Because of his passion, he inspired and continues to inspire countless people--young and old to do their best and never give up.

Everyone has a passion, but what you choose to do with it determines the impact it will have on the world.  Like Michael said, “I can accept failure, everyone fails at something.  But I can’t accept not trying.”

Consider Dr. Seuss.  You know--Green Eggs and Ham?  His first book was rejected by 27 different publishers.  But now, he is the most popular children’s author ever.

Vincent Van Gogh only sold one painting in his lifetime.  But he left us with a wealth of masterpieces and shaped the world of art through his passion.

Oh, and Albert Einstein was labeled “mentally slow”.  Hard to believe right?

Now do you see it?  No matter what you may think, you and I both hold the power to change the world with our passions.  No matter who you are, everyone can positively influence this world with their passions.

A passion is something that moves you, it causes you to think, do, and be more.  I have a passion.  My passion is for volunteering.  I care about others and want to help them.  And as long as I take action on that passion, I can make a great difference in this world--make it a better place.  And you can do the same. 

Now, I'm going to leave you with a question.  Yes, I am assigning a little homework.  Answer for me, "What do you care about?"  Don't copy off your neighbor because no two answers are the same.  We all have different passions and will influence the world in a different way.  So don't give up on yours.  Nothing great has ever been accomplished without one.  Follow your passion—act on it, because together, we can change the world.
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