Sunday, 5 August 2007

Regular Meeting, 4th of August

Hello everyone!

As promised in the previous post, you'll be featured in our blog should you participate in our club meetings. I have to say that this meeting was once again, VERY successful with the participation of members and GUESTS from various clubs including clubs from Division B, Division W, and Division P. I shall now leave you to explore the journey written by John Lee; and let the pictures do the talking!

-----VPPR Tse Han

It was Saturday morning. After a whole week of anticipation, the HELP University College Toastmasters Club was scheduled to meet once again. It was a gathering of vibrant enthusiastic individuals with colourful personalities. It was a gathering with only a single goal: to share the common interest, the common love for speaking.

The meeting commenced at 9.30 am (give or take 10 minutes) with the madam president Loo Shu Wei taking on the task of the Assistant Sargeant-At-Arms (SAA) herself. After calling the meeting to order, she proceeded to give a bright, cheerful Presidential Address to all who were present. She noted that along with the usual club members, the club was honoured with guests from other clubs, and guests from HELP University College in attendance. Shu Wei, as warm and approachable as always, extended a cordial welcome to all who were present in her brief but meaningful Presidential Address.

Wasting no time, she proceeded to introduce the Toastmaster of the Morning, our Vice President Public Relations (VPPR) Tai Tse Han. Meeting the challenge of playing the emcee role for the very first time after a long break; it was noted by everyone that Tse Han did a phenomenal job. Tse Han then proceeded to request the introduction of the Word of the Day from the Language Evaluator, John Lee. With the malevolent intent to put the fellow toastmasters to the task of applying the use of a fairly difficult (not to mention a mouthful!) word, John defined and provided and sample sentence for the word 'Malevolent'.

Toastmaster of the Morning, Tse Han

Word of the day revealed by John Lee

Tse Han then called on the Table Topics Master, Shu Wei (yet again) to conduct the table topics session. Shu Wei demonstrated her amazing ability to multi-task, and brought new meaning to the word of innovation through her methods in conducting the table topics session. Inviting speakers to come forward to face the daunting job of speaking on a particular topic at random, Shu Wei did not provide them with specific topics, but fashioned speech titles from the individual speakers' personal experiences.

Shu Wei : "hmm..let me see what have you done today! "
*casting spells on her palm*

First up was Suria (King of Table Topics), who gave an enlightening, almost 'spiritual' take on his 'Temple Experience'.

before table topics, Suria, leaning against the pillar

after table topics, Suria leaning against the pillar, once again =]

note to Suria : Sorry, the picture while you were giving your table topics was too blur! Hope you dont mind =D

Intending to include the active participation of the student visitors, Shu Wei proceeded to invite Jason to expound on his 'Reasons for Choosing to Join the Toastmasters'.

Jason, commanding his presence with his loud, audible voice! Dont prey prey!

Fan then volunteered to be the next table topics speaker. He then began to share his passionate interest in 'Travelling' with all the fellow Toastmasters who were present.

Fan, 12 years experienced Toastmaster! or is it 13?

Taking note of the fact that we had a long-lost Toastmasters Club member who just decided to return to the fold in our midst, Shu Wei invited Richard to speak next. She then directed him to elaborate on what he was up to in his absence, specifically the experience he had in China. Richard's piece was the closing item for the table topics session.

Richard Gan, back in action!

The time came for the table topics evaluator, Ernest, to pass his verdict. Ernest, in his positive and agreeable manner, gave his all in providing comments on the table topics speakers' performances. He sang praises where praises were due, and provided invaluable, constructive advice to each and every speaker.

Ernest, Table Topics Evaluator

With that, Tse Han returned to reprise his role as the Toastmaster of the Morning. He then brought everyone's attention to the assignment speeches, which were scheduled next.

GE Sue Ding reading notes to the evaluator

All who were present were looking forward to this segment of the meetin
g, as we were about to watch the presentation of two consecutive ice-breaking speeches. Sujin was the first to step up, with her speech entitled 'I am Standing at the Spring of My Life'. She drew lots of laughter with her fascinating take of her experiences in Malaysia. Her reference to Malaysia's oily Nasi Lemak, and our colossal cockroaches, Sujin gave us a taste of her unique brand of humour.

Sujin with her ice breaker speech

Paul continued where Sujin left off by expressing his infinite gratitude to God for the gift of life in his speech 'Thank Life'. The long list of achievements and abilities/talents he presented to the fellow Toastmasters left us all with dropping jaws, and gaping mouths. The question was, what were we doing with our life when Paul was going on about his overachieving ways?

Paul Aun, another ice breaker speaker

The 3rd speech was 'The Killer in Coffee' by John Lee. Spewing facts on how bad coffee was, he left a bad taste in the mouth of all the coffee-lovers among the club members. It was quite evident that everyone in the room would think twice before touching a cup of coffee in the near future.

John Lee with his 2nd speech

After a short break, we were thrown into the next half of the meeting, which comprised 2 more assignment speeches. Without further ado, Jean Ee began to deliver her 8 th speech on 'the OCEAN'. The twist to her topic was that the 'OCEAN' she was talking about was not about the huge mass of water that covers 75% of the world. Instead, she gave the audience an insight of how psychologists evaluate personalities. Introducing personality traits such as 'conscientiousness', 'extroversion', and even 'neurotic', and naming fellow club members as relevant examples, Jean Ee gave a riveting performance, despite her misbehaving visual aid that just could not stay put in its propped up position on the whiteboard.

Jean Ee with her 8th Speech

One of our guests attending the meeting then came forward to deliver her 10th and final speech from the CL manual. She inspired us with her touching speech 'Regrets and Forgiveness'. Weaving in a heart-warming story, Jean effectively brought the inspiration element to her speech. There was no doubt that we were all inspired to be forgiving beings with no or minimal regrets.

Jean inspiring the audience

Our General Evaluator for the morning, and also our honoured guest, Sue Ding proceeded to pass on her words of wisdom and advice to the HELP University College Toastmasters Club. However, before doing so, she called on all the assignment speakers' evaluators: Ernest, Ashrel, Hui Ven, Shu Wei and our Division Governor himself, Azrin Shahrin. They were more than happy to impart their advice and pointers to the speakers involved.

Azmi (left) contemplating on Coffee, while Sue Ding preparing notes for the General Evaluation session

Robert(left) paying FULL attention

Ernest with his jovial and positive feedbacks on Su Jin's Ice breaker
Ashrel's first evaluation on an Ice breaker speech
Shu Wei evaluating Jean Ee's Speech
Azmi evaluating Jean's Speech

Sue Ding then gave her two cents by sharing her thoughts and her opinion on how the meeting in general was run. It was an educational experience to assimilate all the information she provided in her evaluation. Everyone present could not help but notice how relevant and useful her suggestions were. It was the beauty of the Toastmasters community. It was a community where we are encouraged to learn and grow along with everyone else. It was certain that everyone felt it at that moment in time.

Sue Ding giving her honest and sincere evaluation

The time everyone was waiting for finally came to pass – the prize-giving session. The drumroll added a great deal of excitement to the occasion.

First up was the presentation of the Ice breaker awards to Su Jin and Paul to symbolise their brave move towards Public Speaking, and motivating them to achieve their educational goals.

Su Jin receiving her Ice Breaker Award

Paul receiving his Ice Breaker Award

A Competent Communicator Title Trophy was then presented to Jean.

Jean receiving her CC award

Next, our guest from HELP University College, Jason, was crowned the best Table Topics Speaker.

The Best Assignment Speech Speaker Award went to John Lee for the second time.

And Azmi was overjoyed to be named the Best Evaluator. (He insisted that this part be emphasized ;P )

All Smiles, Azmi

After presenting a small token of appreciation to Sue Ding and Azmi for taking the time to attend the meeting, Shu Wei ended the meeting with an edifying account of her Toastmasters journey. Describing how Toastmasters helped her develop and grow, not only as a speaker, but also as a person, she gave the audience reason to keep the spirit while walking our Toastmasters path to being a better individual as a whole.

The meeting was adjourned. It was fantastic, as always. It only leaves us wishing that the next meeting would not be such a long time from now. (2 weeks! what are we to do with the heaps of time in between?)

Till the next meeting, fellow Toastmasters!


Ernest Wong said...

Good everyone can contribute their thoughts about the previous meeting...

Well written John!!

If there's anything else I would like to see in the future log will be the writers opinion(what you like/what can be improved) about the meeting, add a little personal touch to it.

shu wei said...

*is blown away by the post*

Wonderful job, John!

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