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Saturday, December 26, 2020

Optimist International Scholarship Contests in the Pacific Northwest District

The Scholarship Contests are perhaps the most beloved of all Optimist Club activities, next to, of course, the fellowship that we feel as part of a group of positive-thinking advocates for youth and community. Each year since 1928, Optimist International has held the Oratorical Contest at the Optimist Club and District Level. It also promotes the Essay Contest and Communications Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing as opportunities for students to improve their communication skills. 



The Optimist International Essay Contest is the first in the series of competitions. The topic for the 2020-2021 school year is "Reaching your Dreams by Choosing Optimism." 

The Club planning guide may be found at this link. 
The student entry form may be found at this link.

The Optimist International Essay Contest is currently taking place and Optimist Clubs have until February 28, 2021, to submit their winning entry to the PNW District. Each club may submit one entry to compete at the District level for the $2,500 scholarship prize. A check for $50.00 US must accompany the winning entry and mailing instructions will be provided before February 1 by Chair Monique Connors

The Optimist International Oratorical World Championships is a multi-level event that begins at a local Optimist Club. The top two contestants from each club move forward to the Zone-level competition. The top speaker in each Zone then moves forward to the District-level competition where the contestants compete for $1,000, $1,500, and $2,500 scholarships. The first-place speaker then moves on to the World Contest where they may achieve an additional $20,000 scholarship award. 

The topic for the 2020-2021 school year is "Healing the World with Optimism."

The Club planning guide for Oratorical Contests may be found at this link.
The student entry for the Oratorical Contest may be found at this link. 

Cathy Cena is the PNW District Chair for the Optimist International Oratorical competition. She will be reaching out to clubs with more information for participating soon. Please note that the sponsoring Optimist Club contributes $50.00 US for each contestant that advances to the Zone competition. The District competition will take place in the spring near or at the time of the third quarter meeting for the PNW District. If COVID-19 rules remain in effect, the contest will be held virtually. 

The Communications Contest for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (CCDHH) may be held at the discretion of the Executive Board based on the number of clubs likely to participate and the ability to fundraise for the scholarship for deaf students who speak, among other things. Should the competition go forward, the topic for the 2020-2021 school year is "Healing the World with Optimism." 

The Club planning guide for the CCDHH may be found at this link.
The student entry form for the CCDHH may be found at this link. 

As with the other scholarship contests, the sponsoring Optimist Club contributes $50.00 US for each student that competes at the next level following the Club event. The District Chair will communicate additional guidelines if the CCDHH contest is to be held this year. 

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