April 26, 2021

LC students take 1st and 3rd place at Toyama Cup Japanese Speech Contest

The Toyama Cup Speech Contest is an annual Japanese speech contest co-sponsored by the Toyama Prefectural Government of Japan and the Japan-America Society of Oregon.

Lewis & Clark students competed in the 2021 Toyama Cup Japanese Speech Contest, winning first and third place. It was another strong performance by LC in the annual event. Helen Cecile (HC) Nowatka (’21, Chemistry and Asian Studies majors) won first place in the level one category, and Armando Montoya Rodriguez (’22, World Languages Japanese/Spanish major), won third place in level two category. Erika Hutchinson (’22, English major and Japanese minor) also competed in the advanced language level. Participants are divided into two divisions depending on their language level, and this year, students form Lewis & Clark College, Willamette University, and Pacific University competed in the competition.

 

This year’s contest took place over zoom on Saturday, April 24, 2021. Contestants gave 3-5 minute-long speeches in Japanese on a topic of their choice, followed by questions from a panel of judges. HC’s speech focused on her love of rock climbing, and how the sport is practiced in the US and Japan. Armando discussed his study-abroad time in Japan and his work on a project about coming-out and LGBTQ experiences in Osaka. Erika discussed her experiences growing up in the US as a child of Japanese and American parents. All three speeches showcased the students’ strong language skills. Thanks go to Japanese instructors Satomi Newsom, Yoshiko Reynolds, and Yuka Kishiue who worked with these students the past few weeks, refining and practicing their speeches.

The Toyama Cup Speech Contest is an annual Japanese speech contest co-sponsored by the Toyama Prefectural Government of Japan and the Japan-America Society of Oregon. It is for college students who are studying Japanese in Oregon, with the purpose of fostering friendships between Oregon and the sister-state, Toyama Prefecture in Japan.