Rotary Speech Competition Concludes

West G Students Speak Out

Photo by Jim Bohinc

Photo by Jim Bohinc

The Chesterland Rotary is the local chapter of Rotary International. Through Rotary clubs, people from all continents and cultures come together to exchange ideas, form friendships and professional connections, all while making a difference in their backyards and around the world. Rotary International claims to have 1.2 million members and over 35,000 clubs, worldwide. That’s impressive…but what’s happening in our corner of the world ?

Two West Geauga students recently competed in the Rotary 4 – Way Speech Competition at the local level, where the first three winners received a cash prize. Senior Ayah Ighneim and junior Gianna Wagner are to be congratulated for placing first and second in the local competition! After placing 1st,  Ayah moved on to the district competition in April at Aurora High School.

At Aurora, Ighneim delivered a speech about school safety. She was competing versus 43 other contestants, all of whom were winners in their local competitions. For her efforts, Ayah secured 5th place & also received an honorable mention West G could not be more proud !

Regarding why she chose the issue of school safety, Ayah believes the reason some schools have become an unsafe place is because people cannot put political agendas aside and work together. Even though she picked a controversial subject, her words earned her the two placements. “This was a hard topic, but it was so important to me and it made it really easy to write about. It meant a lot that people came out and supported me and I will never forget the experience,” she said.

Interact Club faculty advisor, Mrs. Chelsea Talty said, “Watching Ayah’s leadership skills grow so much over the last three years has been incredibly rewarding. I am so proud of all she has accomplished.” Interact is the student arm of Rotary International.

Her friends and family have every reason to be proud of one of her last accomplishments as a West Geauga student before she graduates this June.

You can view Aya on youtube at