Department of Languages

Department of Languages Hosts 47th Annual Declamation Contest

The Department of Languages hosted the 47th Annual Declamation Contest on October 19, 2019. This annual poetry recitation contest is an opportunity for middle-school and high-school students from across the region to visit the Clemson campus and show off their foreign-language skills by competing in ASL, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Russian, and Spanish. This year the contest brought together 486 students from 34 middle and high schools from GA, NC, and SC to compete in nine languages, with 13 students competing in multiple languages. All languages taught at Clemson were represented this year.

A student receives an award at the  awards ceremony in Tillman Hall

Students compete with recitations of two poems in their respective languages, both a mandatory selection and a second selection, and are evaluated by a panel of judges comprised of members of the community and Clemson faculty and staff. The contests are followed by an awards ceremony in Tillman Hall.

The Declamation Contest also offers the students and their families the opportunity to take a campus tour. This year, approximately 40 students braved the rain and participated in the campus tours.

Department of Languages Chair Salvador Oropesa and the Declamation Committee pose with The Tiger at the Declamation awards ceremony. Not pictured: Melva Persico

The Department of Languages is grateful for the hard work of the faculty, staff, and student and community volunteers that make this event a continued success, especially the Declamation Committee of Su-I Chen, Amy Sawyer, Melva Persico, Anne Salces y Nedeo, Julia Schmidt, and Debra Williamson. This year, 21 faculty and 44 members of the community served as judges. The Department of Languages is grateful for the continued support of donors Dr. Rob Roy McGregor, Jr. and Dr. Ralph Rynes and the Dean’s Office of the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities.