The Taylor's Toastmasters Club has been reborn!
Two words – public speaking. For some of you, these two words may strike a deep feeling of fear or anxiety in you. Just the thought of speaking in front of many people seems like a daunting experience. Taylor’s Toastmasters Club (TTC) is a society that focuses on enhancing students’ public speaking skills through various training sessions. To get a better idea of what the club does, Taylor’s Lexicon interviewed Mr Gurmeet Singh, the President of TTC.
TTC, part of the Toastmaster International Organisation, is one of the hundreds of its kind in Malaysia. The club’s main focus is public speaking and leadership – members can expect to improve significantly in these areas after training under them. Members will train by taking on a self-paced Pathways Education Route, receiving a certificate upon completion, similar to the acknowledgement you receive after completing a module in university.
Training sessions are held bi-weekly, and members have the flexibility to go through the program according to their own paces and preferences. The first limb of the program is called ‘Table Topics’ in which members are given a topic, usually subject to a theme, to speak impromptu on for about one to two minutes. This training aims to teach members to think quickly on their feet, organise their thoughts and confidently verbalise those thoughts in a coherent manner. Mr Gurmeet comments that it would be useful for students to develop this skill as it is a useful tool to have under their belt to help them in future interviews and presentations.
The second limb following ‘Table Topics’ is ‘Prepared Speeches.’ Members will be able to choose from 11 different ‘pathways’ to pursue based on their interests related to public speaking. For instance, if you are interested in developing Public Relations skills, you may feel inclined to embark on the “Public Relations” pathway. After choosing a pathway, members will have to complete a series of prepared speeches and deliver them during club meetings.
For both kinds of sessions, each speaker will be evaluated by another member. In every meeting, members will have the opportunity to play different roles such as being the Toastmaster of the Day, Timer or Grammarian. The members rotate on taking on the roles at each meeting and will be evaluated for every role and every Pathways project speech.
Aside from regular club meetings, members can also choose to participate in Toastmasters competitions which are held 4 times a year. There are several levels in each competition, ranging from club level to world level.
Students do not need any prior experience before joining the club – so fret not if you have never given a speech or perhaps even fear public speaking. The club aims to build your confidence and slowly progress to be a better speaker. The versatility of TTC training will help you hone your public speaking skills. You will be taught not only to deliver a speech but the art of persuasion and inspiration through words as well.
However, what you will gain from joining TTC is not limited to just public speaking skills. You will be given the opportunity to network with people from other divisions of Toastmasters, so you can also develop your socialisation skills and meet people with similar interests. Furthermore, members can also seek to gain leadership skills if they join the club’s Executive Committee.
The first-time fee as a new member amounts to USD$65, and subsequently, members will have to pay USD$45 every 6 months. TTC opens recruitment to students at any time, so if you are interested in joining the club, be sure to contact them on their Instagram @taylorstoastmasters.