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2018 Minnesota Chinese Speech Contest

On Saturday, April 21, 2018, the Confucius Institute at the University of Minnesota hosted the second annual Minnesota Chinese Speech Contest for High School Students at Eisenhower Community Center in Hopkins, Minnesota. Fourteen students from across the state competed in four levels of the competition. The winner from each level will have the opportunity to compete at the 2018 Midwest Regional Chinese Speech Contest for High School Students held in Valparaiso, Indiana, on May 12, 2018, where one student will be selected to attend the 11th Global Chinese Bridge Speech Contest for High School Students in China in fall 2018.

At the start of the program, Joan Brzezinski, Executive Director of the China Center and Confucius Institute at the University of Minnesota, greeted the participants and their families and spoke of the future opportunities that students’ Chinese language backgrounds will open to them. Alexandra Koullick, winner of the 2017 Midwest Regional Chinese Speech Contest for High School Students, described her experience traveling to China for the global competition, where she made lifelong friends with contestants from around the world and was further inspired to continue her involvement with China. Yao Tu, Associate Director of the Chinese Flagship Program at the University of Minnesota, was joined by Cholan Zheng, a student of the Chinese Flagship Program, to introduce contestants to opportunities for continuing their Mandarin Chinese studies at the University of Minnesota.

Students competed in three rounds of the competition. First, contestants delivered two-minute speeches in Mandarin Chinese, followed by answering questions from the judges. Next, students sat for a thirty-minute written exam to test their Chinese language ability. Finally, students performed in a dynamic and exciting talent show. Performances included traditional Hmong dance, Chinese painting and calligraphy, and poetry recitations. Students also showcased their musical talents, with viola, violin, flute, piano, and vocal performances.

The Confucius Institute congratulates all participants for their efforts and wishes the winning contestants the best of luck on the next stage of the competition!

Awards

High School Competition Winners
 

Level 1
First Place
Second Place
Third Place
Cindy Lor,
Minneapolis South High School
Django LeBeau,
Minneapolis South High School
Phillip Truong,
Minneapolis South High School

 

Level 2
First Place
Second Place
Third Place
Adna Omar,
Minneapolis South High School
Duaa Ibrahim,
Woodbury High School
Abdurahman Adan,
Minneapolis South High School

 

Level 3
First Place
Second Place
Third Place
Sophia He,
Duluth East High School
n/a
n/a

Level 4
First Place
Second Place
Third Place
Anthony Chen,
Saint Paul Academy and Summit School
Ethan Mirman,
Minnetonka High School
Maya Mischke,
Breck School

 

Outstanding Individual Awards
Best Talent Show Performance
Anthony Chen, Saint Paul Academy and Summit School



Thank you to our panel of judges: Hui Bi (毕慧), Zhining Chin (秦志宁), Rong Cui (催嵘), Kaishan Kong (孔凯删), Hai Liu (刘海), Yao Tu (涂摇), Margaret Wong (王昭华), and Zou Zhen (邹臻)