On October 22, 2016, the Department of Languages hosted the 44th Annual Declamation Contest. This poetry recitation contest brings together middle- and high-school students from South Carolina and Georgia, who come to the Clemson campus for the day to show off their language skills. This year, almost 500 students from 27 middle and high schools registered to compete in ASL, Chinese, French, German, Latin, Japanese, and Spanish. Clemson students also volunteered to help with registration and supervise contest rooms in Daniel Hall.
Competitors recited two poems, a mandatory selection and a second selection. They were evaluated by 63 judges, who included Clemson faculty, Clemson graduate and exchange students, and members of the community. After the judging was complete, students and their families attended an awards ceremony in Tillman Hall. The event also gave participants a chance to explore the campus, eat in a dining hall, and learn more about the school. Past Declamation participants have attended or are now attending Clemson to study foreign languages.
The contest’s continued success is due to the hard work of the Department’s faculty and staff, especially the Declamation Committee of Su-I Chen, Scott Harris, Melva Persico, Cathy Robison, Anne Carole Salces y Nedeo, Amy Sawyer, and Roger Simpson.