I'm a Winner!

Every year (for the past 21 years) the BYU Korean Language and Culture Club hosts a Korean speech contest. It usually happens during the winter semester. For two years, I have tried to enter into the contest. I have always found out about the contest after the deadline. This year, however, I was able to submit a speech in time for the contest.

There are quite a few native Koreans here at BYU, so they do have rules about who can enter teh contest. You can’t be a native Korean speaker, and there are different categories that depend on the length of time the language has been studied. I entered the advanced division, which is basically the one for returned missionaries. The prizes vary from year to year, and have ranged from a trip to Korea to gift certificates at a local Korean restaurant.

The topics are supposed to be about some aspect of Korean culture, whether it be food, history, language or anything in between. My speech was about a possible relation between an alphabetic script written during the Yuan Dynasty in China and the Korean alphabet, written 200 years later (I know most of you are thinking, “wow… really interesting stuff there Romgi…”). You don’t have to memorize the speech, but you kind of get bonus points if you do.

Speaking of points, each speech is rated by the judges based on content, relevance, difficulty of vocabulary, correct use of vocabulary, pronunciation and intonation (there may be some other categories… I’m not really sure).

So I memorized my speech, and I won! This happened almost a month ago, so you might be asking yourself why I am writing about it now. Provo has a fairly well established Korean community, and they have a newspaper that is published monthly. I am in the paper, as it talks about the speech contest. The girl Roni tutors is the girl who wrote the article. If anybody wants a translation of the article, just say so in the comments and I’ll post a translation.


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