NEWS Walnut Valley Unified School District
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 880 S. Lemon Avenue
April 16, 2012 Walnut, CA 91789
Kelli Gile, Office of Community Resources
(909) 595-1261 ext. 31204
Walnut Senior Wins Numerous Speech Contests
WALNUT, CA—Walnut High School senior Brian Yu has been on a winning streak in several speech competitions.
Earlier this year, he won the school’s Black Student Union (BSU) Speech Contest, “Creating Solutions for the Challenges Faced by Children Today.”
He also presented his winning speech on the topic of “Hunger in America” to the BSU luncheon on January 11, 2012.
As the winner of the Walnut High School contest, his speech was entered in the Gulen Foundation International Contest. More than 1,300 essays from 65 countries were entered in the international competition.
Brian took a 4th Place award in this competition. He is among the 30 winners and will learn if his is one of the top winners, with up to $3,000, at the ceremony.
He will fly to Washington, D.C. and New York City to attend the award ceremonies from May 28 through June 2, 2012.
As part of his prize, he will tour the capital, meet with U.S. Congress members, visit Georgetown University, and participate in cross-cultural discussions and presentations.
The ceremony unfortunately conflicts with the Walnut High graduation slated for May 31.
“Though I am saddened that to be missing my high school graduation, I will be proud to represent my school and my country at this extraordinary delegation of Youth Leaders from places such as Bulgaria, South Korea, Nigeria and other places around the world. Knowing that my speech has placed in one of the top 5 in the world is a mind blowing experience, but I owe it all to English Teacher Mrs. (Victoria) Workman who sacrificed way too many lunchtimes to edit my speech and English Teacher Mr. (Jeff) Silva who has gone far above and beyond his duties as a teacher to help me grow as a speaker and a person, and continues to serve as my role model."
“We are crossing our fingers that Brian wins the big prize! Walnut High is thrilled to recognize Brian Yu as a winner and representative of our school,” said Principal Jeff Jordan.
After winning the district level contest held at Westhoff Elementary School, Brian represented the WVUSD in the 2012 Association of California School Administrator’s (ACSA) Regional Finals speech contest in Glendale on March 22 and he took the First Place award.
The topic of his three-minute speech was “Creating Rock Solid Leaders”. He will receive a $500 scholarship at the ACSA Spring Conference and Awards Banquet at the Castaway Restaurant in Burbank on April 30. Three winners of the Region 15 2012 High School Oratorical Contest will serve as keynote speakers, sharing how others have inspired them to leadership.
Brian said it takes about 6-8 hours to prepare a 4-minute competition speech. The detailed process is definitely not something that can be accomplished in a class period.
“That would be like comparing microwaving a rib-eye steak to spicing, glazing, sautéing, and grilling a nice filet mignon!”
Brian Yu and his date Waverly before the senior prom on April 14.