By GARY HANNER
Odenville Middle School and St. Clair County High School were both winners at the recent Alabama Student Council Association’s State Conference, which was held at the University of Alabama.
Laura Moxim won first place in the middle school speech competition, making OMS a winner in the speech competition seven years in a row.
“This is wonderful and awesome,” OMS drama teacher and SGA advisor Tammy Williams said. “We are preparing tomorrow’s students today, indeed. They will be able to go on to high school and make a difference in their school and community. It helps them with their self-esteem and self-confidence.”
Laura is a seventh-grade student at OMS. She said winning this really means a lot to her because she didn’t know what to expect.
“This is my first experience of a speech competition,” she said. “I practiced a lot. My speech had to be at least 2 minutes but not over three minutes. My speech was 2:47 minutes.”
Laura said the theme of her speech was how to unleash your superpowers as a leader.
“I talked about how superpowers really didn’t exist,” she said. “We should think more of what we could use with our super strength, as in determination, loyalty and courage to bring about change and make the world a better place.”
OMS also took first place honors in Leadership and Service. OMS received the Outstanding Gold Honor Council Award for Middle Schools.
OMS will serve as co-vice president with James Clemens High School on the Alabama Student Council Board of Directors. This is the first time a middle school has been elected to serve as an officer school on the state board.
SCCHS student Taylor England won first place in the high school speech competition. It is the first time the high school has won the speech competition. They also won second place in Leadership and Service Project. They were also Outstanding Gold Honor Council for high schools.
Williams said while Taylor was in middle school, she was quiet and shy.
“She has taken what she learned at the middle school, gone to the high school and has made a difference,” Williams said.
Taylor, a junior at SCCHS, said she tried to think about something that would be different as it pertained to her speech.
“Instead of just saying all of these things we could do, I shared my own story,” she said. “I was born early (three months premature) and had to go through a lot of obstacles and trials in my life. I weighed 1-pound, 12-ounces. That’s how you find out your inner super leader. That’s how you find out who you are and the difference you can make by what you have been through.”
SCCHS SGA advisor Angela Mizzell said she was proud of Taylor because she gave a super speech last year.
“She came in this year, added a little bit of extra work to it, and was able to win,” she said.
OMS went up against eight schools, while SCCHS went up against 12 schools.
Reach Gary Hanner at email@example.com.