Thursday, May 26, 2011

Battling Nerves

On Tuesday, I, along with other ILC students from Hercules gathered at the Hercules City Council meeting. 
While I waited to make my speech, I asked each fellow ILC student what to talk about. I was relieved to learn that my speech had similar content to my peers. However, whatever sense of relief evaporated as the time for me to make my speech drew nearer and nearer. As Mr. Ramsey, Mrs. Ishmael, and the Cornell Hotelies gave their speeches, my nerves reached a peak.

Following the final Hotelie speech, Mr. Ramsey nudged me towards the podium and I took a deep breath and told myself I can do it. The beginning of the speech went well, but as I talked, I totally forgot everything I had prepared. As my nerves began to mount once again, I reminded myself to slow down, and low and behold I remembered some of my speech. Towards the end of my speech I decided to speak spontaneously, and finish strong.

After I concluded my speech, I felt like I had just cleared a hurdle, and conquered a task which I am not comfortable with. The irony is that I think that the ending of my speech, the part where I spoke spontaneously, was more beneficial than the parts that I prepared. The City Council meeting has made me feel more confident with public speaking, a key life skill.

I also appreciated listening to the eloquent speeches given by fellow ILC students because I got a front row seat to the best speakers at my school: Hercules High. I got to pick up on what each person did well in, which I hope to use to improve my public speaking.

The ILC and the Hercules City Council

The presentation to the City Council is, in my opinion, one of the most daunting milestones one must pass as a member of the Ivy League Connection. And though I was a bundle of nerves, I thought the presentation went very well. 

The ILC students eloquently explained what the ILC means to them and what they are looking forward to. 

We were preceded by Mr. Ramsey and HHS Assistant Principal Mrs. Ishmael who introduced the program and the Hercules students. 

It was also great to hear Yueming describe her journey with the ILC and how it ultimately led her to Cornell. 

The City Council members were very gracious and congratulated each of us ILC students. 

The group photo was the final event of the evening and I look forward to seeing it posted in the Hercules Middle/High School office near those from previous years.