ESU Ukraine » Information » NPSC 2017: only the winner takes it all?
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  • Author: varder
  • Date: 31-01-2017, 22:29
31-01-2017, 22:29

NPSC 2017: only the winner takes it all?

Category: Information

Since my first year at university I’ve heard a lot about the National Public Speaking Competition (NPSC) held by the English-Speaking Union, but decided to participate only when I was a third-year student. What a surprise it was when, with the first try, I appeared to be the runner-up of the competition! The only thing I regret that I haven’t taken part in it earlier. For those who still doubt whether they should try to become the part of this incredible contest, my strongest recommendation: DO IT!

The first thing that is worth noticing is organization. This year it was the second time America House welcomingly invited the participants from all over Ukraine to compete for the opportunity to present our country in the International Public Speaking Competition that will be held in May 2017 in London.

The event took place on January 28th and consisted of 2 stages: semi-final and final. In the semi-final 17 word-painters presented their prepared speeches on the topic “Label jars, not people”. They interpreted the theme the way they understood it and after finishing the speech they had to answer various questions from the Question team, audience and the judges.

For the Final only 7 participants were chosen to present impromptu speeches. This is the hardest stage of the competition because having only 10 minutes for preparation you are to deliver a 3-minute speech on a proposed theme. With trembling hands and eyes full of desire to win, all the participants did a great job and successfully coped with this task. After an intense discussion the judges finally announced Kateryna Ilchenko, a student of Kyiv National University of ‘Kyiv-Mohyla Academy’as the winner of NPSC 2017!

Despite the spirit of competition, it was extremely pleasant to observe friendly atmosphere that seemed to occupy the whole America House. During the breaks between the stages of the competition, the participants had a chance to communicate with each other, the judges and guests. I was amazed when after the semi-final a lot of people came to me willing to discuss my speech and ask me additional questions. It was so enjoyable to be surrounded by people who are so interested in what you are doing!

It was the first time when the NPSC was broadcasted online and now this video is easilyaccessible on Youtube channel of America House (watch! like! comment!). Though it was an additional pressure to feel that you would be watched not only by the people in front of you, it is a great step forward in popularizing the NPSC in Ukraine. The participants who are only going to try their hands for the first time can get a more vivid picture of the whole event, those who come back can analyze their performances and correct mistakes and the winners can just enjoy their moment of fame one more time.

The NPSC is not the contest of the English language knowledge. It develops your communicative skills, teaches you the art of persuasion, expands your mind-set, builds confidence and, of course, takes away fright. Perhaps, it was fear that didn’t allow me to participate earlier. I was too terrified not to justify my own expectations, to speak in public and express my opinion radically. But believe me: a few days after the competition you realize that all your fears are worthless. The NPSC turns you not only in a convincing speaker but also a confident person with broad outlook.

I want to express my sincerest thanks to all the ESU members and especially to the ESU Ukraine Chairman Margaryta Danilko for organization of the NPSC, to America House for warm reception and also for providing all the participants, non-residents of Kyiv, with accommodation and tickets to the capital, to the judges for their comments and fair decisions and, of course, to all the participants for unforgettable memories.

If you try to find the direction you want to follow in your life, the NPSC is the greatest place to search. You could not even imagine how I regret that I would not have the opportunity to compete next year because I’ll be out of age, but if you have a chance to participate – use it! Don’t be afraid to lose. Believe me: for yourself you’ll be a winner anyway!

Yana Hrebeniuk, the runner-up of NPSC 2016-2017,


a third-year student, Faculty of Foreign Languages, KSPU





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