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April 10, 2012

Alex Smith wins 2012 Smith-Merritt Public Speaking Contest

Calvin Smith with Alex Smith

A freshman from Charleston is the winner of the 2012 Smith-Merritt Public Speaking Contest, conducted by the Eastern Illinois University Department of Communication Studies.

Alex Smith, a Health Studies Pre-Med major from Charleston High School, received first place for his speech against standardized testing in schools. As the winner, he received a certificate and $500.00.  Alex is pictured above with contest co-sponsor, Dr. Calvin Smith.

Second place went to Mary Jo Worthington, a junior Marketing major from Rushville, who received a certificate and $300.00. The third place speaker was Laramie Immel, a freshman Chemistry major from Carmi, who received $100 and a certificate. 

The contest was open to students enrolled in Public Speaking (CMN 1310) during the Spring Semester of 2012.  Other finalists who competed on Tuesday evening were:

  • Katherine Eckberg, sophomore Special Education major from Batavia (Aurora Rosary HS)
  • Darius Lee Francis, freshman Communication Studies major from Monee (Crete Monee HS)

The contest is sponsored by and named in honor of Dr. Calvin Smith and Dr. Floyd Merritt, who are both emeritus faculty in the Department of Communication Studies.

Smith Merritt Finalists 

Contest Finalists (Left to Right):  Darius Lee Francis, Katherine Eckberg, Alex Smith, Laramie Immel, Mary Jo Worthington.

Previous Winners of Smith-Merritt Public Speaking Contest:

1993:  Aleka Karachalios

1994:  Dana Taylor

1995:  Dawn Huddleston

1996:  Shelly Ng

1997:  Sandra Zumbahlen

1998:  Lisa Shumard

1999:  Amanda Zuber

2000:  Jessica Shields

2002:  Gabriel Holmes

2003:  Megan Smith

2004:  Danielle Blackburn

2005:  Shannon Inboden

2006:  Nicole Barber

2007:  Emily Immel

2008:  Emily Steele

2009:  Tim Aberle

2011:  Darnell Tyms

2012:  Alex Smith