The American Legion sponsors a High School Oratory Scholarship Program — “A Constitutional Speech Contest” — designed to develop a deeper knowledge and appreciation of the Constitution of the United States. The contest is open to all high school students, freshmen through senior, less than 20-years old including Home-schooled students. The objectives of the contest are to help develop leadership qualities; the ability to think and speak clearly/intelligently; and provide an understanding and appreciation of the duties, responsibilities, rights and privileges of American citizenship.
Contestants must give two speeches: (1) a Prepared Oration that is an original work of the student on any aspect of the Constitution with an emphasis on the obligations of citizens to the government of the United States and; (2) an Assigned Topic that addresses any one of four topics drawn at each level of the contest. The Prepared Oration must be 8-10 minutes in duration and the Assigned Topic must be 3-5 minutes in duration. The Assigned Topics for the current year can be found at www.kylegion.org/oratorical.
For their efforts students can win scholarships that range from $900 for District winners; $2000 (1st), $1500 (2nd) and $1000 (3rd) at the Department (State) level. The Kentucky winner advances to the National Finals with a chance to win $25,000 (1st); $22,500 (2nd) and $20,000 (3rd). There are other prizes awarded at the different levels, but the important aspect of these awards is that they can be used for any of the student’s needs or wants, not just tuition.
The First District includes schools and home-schooled students from Ballard, Caldwell, Calloway, Crittenden, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Livingston, Lyon, Marshall, McCracken, and Trigg counties. The First District competition will be conducted on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022 at 2 p.m. at the Lee S. Jones Convention Center, 510 SR93 South, Eddyville.
Students are encouraged to register early to compete in the contest by contacting Mark Kennedy, district coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at 270-752-3333. The registration deadline to compete is Monday, Jan. 3, 2022 by 5:00 pm. Complete contest rules, schedules and awards are available at www.kylegion.org/oratorical.