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The Lookout | June 24, 2018

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LCC Toastmasters helps students with leadership, public speaking skills

LCC Toastmasters helps students with leadership, public speaking skills
Nikki Nicolaou

Jaimie Bozack
A&E Editor

LCC’s West Campus Toastmasters International Club started in September 2015 and has become vital toward helping students gain leadership and speaking skills.

Vice President of Education Sarah Linz said Toastmasters is open to students, faculty, staff and community members.

“There is great interest in helping students work on public speaking and leadership skills,” Linz said. “They are considered ‘soft skills’ and are not always addressed in the classroom.

“Toastmasters allows students to work on these skills which are important, especially when seeking employment.”

Members earn credentials by giving speeches and participating in events, Linz said. These credentials are recognized throughout the Toastmasters organization and can help build resumes.

Linz said after participants give their first 10 speeches they earn their Competent Communicator Award. From there members can earn advanced awards, participate in local competitions and get as involved as they would like.

“Many people struggle with public speaking,” Linz said. “Toastmasters is a great way to practice these skills in a supportive environment and get helpful feedback in order to grow.”

Toastmasters will host the spring 2016 open house on Tuesday, Jan. 19 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in room W157 at LCC West Campus. The open house will provide an opportunity for people interested in Toastmasters to see what a meeting is like, hear speeches and learn more about the organization.

“The goal of the open house is to gain membership,” Linz said. “There is a cost to join, but guests are always welcome at meetings for free and can attend as many times as they like to make sure the club is right for them.

“The cost is also quite affordable, especially in relation to what you get out of it.”

Linz was a member of another Toastmasters club for one and a half years before starting the one at LCC. She encouraged students to join the group.

“I have always struggled with public speaking and being comfortable in groups of people, which can make meetings and presentations difficult,” Linz said. “Toastmasters has absolutely helped me gain comfort and confidence in my speaking ability. I also really like getting to know the people in our club.”

For more information about the group please contact Linz at linzs1@lcc.edu or (517) 483-1314.

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