Brock Toastmasters provides a supportive and positive learning environment in which members are given the tools to develop communication and leadership skills.
Toastmasters International is a non-profit educational organization that shares effective public speaking tools and teaches leadership skills through a worldwide network of clubs. The Brock Toastmasters club was founded in 2011 and meets every Wednesday in Cairns Complex on Brock’s main campus.
The Toastmasters club provides Brock students with a industry-recognized curriculum to develop their communication and leadership skills. Each week, one or two club members deliver speeches, while other members take on meeting facilitation roles.
Brock’s Toastmasters club is currently recognized as a high performing club within their district and routinely receive numerous accolades in the Toastmasters community. The club is also known for their wide range of program offerings catered to both students and staff at Brock. Most notably, in the fall they hold the Brock Toastmasters’ annual speech competition, which will be held at the end of November.
“We like to think of our club as unique since we are quite a multi-generational and multicultural group. [The club] currently has members aged 20 to 66 and the difference in generations really seems to work well together,” said Breah Sovegjarto, Brock Toastmasters’ Vice President of Public Relations. “With a blend of students and local professionals, we all agree that we learn so much from one another because we come from such varied backgrounds and life experiences.”
The club welcomes all students to their meetings and encourages them to not only attend and observe the meeting structure, but to also participate in their Table Topics which are improvisational speech rounds. As of August 2019, ExperienceBU recognizes Toastmasters as part of the Campus-wide Co-curriculum (CWC) and visiting as a guest entitles students to a co-curricular credit for ‘attending a skill building workshop’.
Sovegjarto first visited Toastmasters as a guest in order to practice speaking during the Table Topics rounds, before she decided to become a full member. She praises the group’s highly encouraging atmosphere and attributes much of her present success to the educational programming and the tips she received from members.
“Participating in Toastmasters on a weekly basis has significantly improved the quality of the educational tours I provide at [The Art Gallery of Ontario] where I volunteer and my confidence in engaging diverse audiences,” said Sovegjarto. “Our Toastmasters group is also super supportive so even though the educational program really dares us to be vulnerable and try new things, it’s always met with smiles and cheering, and so much encouraging feedback.”
Interested students are encouraged to attend Brock Toastmasters’ weekly meetings on Wednesdays in the Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Research Complex from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Students are also invited to engage with the club through their website at brock.toastmastersclubs.org, or by joining their Facebook group.