Communication department sponsors 22nd annual public speaking contest

Follow RITNEWS on Twitter

A. Sue Weisler

Elizabeth Reeves-O’Connor, co-director of the spring edition of the Department of Communication’s Public Speaking Contest, discusses the competition with finalists Ankur Patel, far left, Joshua Dietrich and Catherine Harris. Patel received first prize for his speech “Get Excited About the Switch to Semesters.

RIT’s Department of Communication hosted its 22nd annual Public Speaking Contest finals May 5. Ankur Patel, a senior software engineering major, took first place for his speech, “Get Excited About the Switch to Semesters.”

Catherine Harris, an advertising and public relations major, won second place for “The Price of Low Prices” and Joshua Dietrich, an applied networking and systems administration major, earned third place for “Why RIT Needs a Campus-Wide Computer Power Policy for All Computing Labs.”

The contest, which is open to all RIT undergraduates and is held fall, winter and spring quarters, drew over 100 participants from across campus for the spring competition.

“We are very proud of the growth of the contest and the wide spread interest from students across the university,” notes Elizabeth Reeves-O’Connor, a lecturer in the Department of Communication and co-director of the contest. “Public speaking is an incredibly important skill and is a must in numerous professions. It is our hope this contest will better prepare our graduates for speaking in front of an audience and conveying a message clearly and concisely.”

For more information, visit