Students compete for scholarships in local Lions Club Student Speakers Contest

Student Speaker Participants (left to right) Conner Grethe, Charlotte Connolly, Kristin Dea, and Cody Tanner. Courtesy photo

Kristin Dea, an 11th grade student at Grace Christian Academy, has taken the first step in securing scholarships for college by winning a local competition sponsored by the Seal Beach Lions Club.

Ms. Dea’s speech was among four contestants in the annual California Lions Student Speakers Club Level Contest. Multiple District Four California Lions Clubs International is sponsoring the program to emphasize the importance of public speaking as a critically important life skill to young people everywhere.

“This was a wonderful opportunity to practice my public speaking skills. My solution for homelessness was a program for supportive housing,” the 16-year-old from Cypress said. The speech was selected by a panel of four judges for its originality, main points being supported by evidence, conclusion, emphasis, voice control enunciation, pronunciation, sincerity, enthusiasm, poise, cohesive effort, logic, organization, speaker persuasiveness and adhering to the topic, “Homelessness in CA; What’s the Solution?”

The judging was held on Thursday, February 6, 2020, at the Mary Wilson Library in Seal Beach. The panel of judges included residents of Seal Beach and Rossmoor: Eva Estrada, LMFT – Crisis Clinician; Michael Low, DPM – Podiatrist; Sargent First Class Aaron Zuniga – Army Paramedic; and Kori DeLeon, President at Seal Beach Chamber of Commerce – Owner at RTI Insurance Agency. Each of the judges spoke with the students after the contest to share their experiences with public speaking. They offered praise and suggestions for growth to the students.

Seal Beach Lions Club President Mike Gibbons said he was impressed by the expression and creativity of the students, “It is obvious that these young people have strong ideas about current events. I’m so proud that we were able to provide them with the opportunity to share their views and skills.”

Ms. Dea will advance through the multiple district levels to compete. The next level of the competition will take place on Monday, March 2, 2020, in Garden Grove. The contestants can win various amounts of scholarships along the way to the final contest. Kristin has an opportunity to accrue scholarships at each level with a final award of $10,000.

“Our club is proudly promoting Kristin as she advances in the competition, and we hope that her self-expression and independent thinking inspires the public’s perspective on this topic,” Gibbons said.

Locally, Dea and three other students were honored for their participation by the Seal Beach Lions Club on Wed., February 19, 2020 at the Seal Beach Yacht Club.

View more inspiring stories at Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization with more than 1.35 million members in 210 countries and geographical areas around the world. Since 1918, Lions clubs have aided the blind and visually impaired and made a strong commitment to community service and serving youth throughout the world.

Students compete for scholarships in local Lions Club Student Speakers Contest