Friday, June 10, 2011

Open House and 20th meeting of 2011

This Friday, UT Sciences Toastmasters held our very first Open House!

Our recent efforts at outreach bore fruit as we counted 14 new guests at our event. Also present were founding members of our club Trey Gramann and John Schmidt, and Area Governor Paul Wilson.  And last but not least, 11 of our current and former members were in the house - a great turnout, considering how many people are out of town for the summer.

We were inspired by wordplay for our choice of refreshments: Three varieties of bread and a toaster allowed people to prepare their own Toast, and an array of spreads, sauces, cheeses and meats served as accompaniments. Some very unusual concoctions came about as a result!

Presiding Officer Justin Hall opened the meeting and invited all the guests to introduce themselves. Then Maryam Ali led the meeting as Toastmaster of the Day.

Two members delivered prepared speeches today. The first was by Teresa Lai, who has completed her Competent Communicator manual and is now giving her Advanced Communicator speeches. This was her first speech from the Speaking to Inform manual, and she spoke on "Toastmaster Rewards", in keeping with the Open House theme. The second speech of the day was delivered by Justin Hall for his 4th project in the Competent Communicator series. He spoke on "The Words We Choose" and how they impact the message we deliver.

Jordi Calveras posed a series of TableTopics questions, encouraging current and veteran members to share their experiences in Toastmasters International.

Tatiana Makhinova made her debut as the General Evaluator today. Alex Loh experienced his first time as Speech Evaluator for Teresa, whereas Kalen Bramann evaluated Justin. The supporting roles were filled by Grammarian Eamon O'Dea, Time Keeper Kayoko, Ah-Counter Jag Swaminathan, and Vote Counter Jordi Calveras. The Word of the Day was "Proficient".

Before the close of the meeting we encouraged the guests to consider becoming members, and three new members signed up on the spot! We're thrilled to have Ahmed Aldkhil, Giacomo Ravo, and Jiusheng Yan among our ranks, and we hope all our other guests will return to our regular meeting next Friday. The theme will be "Pet Peeves". See you then!

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