Archived Story

Harding wins SMC speech contest

Published 8:50pm Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Southwestern Michigan College student Cory Harding, of Cassopolis, was named the Top Advocate for the college’s speech competition.

2009 Cassopolis graduate Cory Harding

Harding, who defeated four other SMC students during the final competition, received the award Friday. Judging the competition were Dowagiac Mayor Donald Lyons, SMC Board of Trustees Chairman Dr. Fred L. Mathews, Monica Kennedy, deputy clerk with the Cass County Clerk’s Office, Melissa Sytsma, with the Cass County Prosecutor’s Office, and John Eby, Leader Publications.
Harding’s winning speech topic was “Why Assisted Suicide Should Be Legalized.” Citing the pain and suffering terminally ill individuals face, Harding argued “people should have the right to make their own decisions” when it comes to dying and that they should be allowed to do so with dignity.
The speech had to be 10 minutes and the speaker had to demonstrate the ability to present an argument that was organized and included an introduction, conclusion and main points; clearly state their position on the subject; and be able to deliver the speech at the level of a novice public speaker.
The other competitors were Bridgette Stone, of Niles, whose topic was “The Healthy Aspects of Beauty Pageants;” Thomas Cole, of Niles, whose topic was “Why Parental Consent for Minors Should be Required to Have an Abortion;” Shannon Keene, of Dowagiac, whose topic was “Why Assisted Suicide Should Be Legalized;” and Bryann Books, of Three Rivers, whose subject was “Why Federal Subsidies Should Not Be Cut to the Arts.”

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