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Speech! Speech!
 
Today's blog post comes via Communications Professor Jill Arabas!  Take it away, Jill!
 
 
Of all the courses at Middlesex, one of the most transformative is Speech. Many students enter the course petrified of standing in front of an audience. By the end of the semester, they know how to command a room, get their classmates to laugh, and persuade their peers to recycle their trash, visit the Dominican Republic, or vote in the next election.

 

Middlesex students have been giving speeches on some fascinating topics this semester. Caroline Porter told her classmates about the axolotl, a Mexican salamander on the endangered species list. She even brought two of her pet axolotls into class.

Kimberly Guevara talked about her experience with her beloved ballet pointe shoes, blisters and all, while Jonathan Mendonca explained how to make pizza (and made the class hungry). Rosemary Gathecha gave a talk about her homeland of Kenya, complete with minty candies for the crowd. Briana Serrano narrated a slideshow of her beloved Chicago. And Chase Webber spoke about Lake Baikal in Russia, the world’s deepest lake, which he visited with his engineer father.

“Speech class gives students the chance to learn public speaking in a safe environment,” says Arabas. “It’s a place for students to make mistakes, take chances, and learn not to say ‘um’ and ‘like’ long before they give that speech that really counts – on a job interview or presentation that can change their life.”

“It amazes me the skills that students already bring to the class,” says Prof. Gordon Curry. “The activities used in this class are really tools to help bring out what they already possess but need the right venue in which to try.”

The Speech classes at Middlesex draw students from all majors, from Nursing and Computer Science to Business and Liberal Studies. Public speaking courses are consistently rated among the most useful of college offerings because they give students expertise they can use immediately and far into the future.

“It’s exceeded my expectations,” says Ali Alogaili, who gave his informative speech on happiness. “You learn who you really are and what other people think of you. It gives you the chance to stand in front of everybody and talk about your personal experience, hobbies and skills, and that’s not as easy as it looks.”

Alogaili’s classmates have given speeches ranging from Facebook privacy and Siberian huskies, to how to tell when someone is lying, to what it’s like to be the oldest sibling. Next up are persuasive speeches, followed by everybody’s favorite, the demonstration speech (which often comes with tasty goodies or other kinds of samples).

Depending on the instructor, MCC students also learn to give impromptu, extemporaneous and, of course, special occasion speeches, so they can get practice for that wedding toast, birthday party or eulogy that they’ll eventually have to give.

Best of all, they have a good time doing it.

“The class is so much fun,” says Adrian Gilbert, who recently gave a speech on the basics of soccer. “I’m learning how to be presentable, talk on my feet, make slides and make a presentation. I love being here. I get to talk about what I love. And I get to interact with other students who share the same passions that I do.”

To learn more about programs in the college's Communications program visit  https://catalog.middlesex.mass.edu/preview_program.php?poid=2174&catiod=18

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Posted: Monday, April 10, 2017 1:36 PM by MCC Blog Admin

Comments

Winny Oyamo said:

Very fascinating topics!

Now I want to take the class.

Winny Oyamo

# April 10, 2017 1:57 PM

Professor Lucy McKain said:

As a fellow Speech professor I see all of the same skills learned, applied, and perfected in my classes here at MCC. It is an amazing progressive learning journey for students throughout the semester. This communication class is a class for everyone.

# April 11, 2017 9:29 AM
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