After months of hard work, Foothill seniors presented their highly anticipated Dragon Talks this past Friday, May 27.
Dragon Talks is an annual speech project that every senior participates in. The project is based off of TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) Talks, a nonprofit organization dedicated to spreading ideas in the form of short, inspirational talks. Seniors can create a talk based off of anything they are passionate about. Topics this year ranged from memes to sex education to racism.
Up to ten seniors were in each classroom to give their presentations, then students in that particular class voted for their top two. Those two moved on to a different classroom where they presented again and students voted for their favorite.
In total, there were 25 winners: Dominik Aylard, Nick Applegate, Emma Birch, Robin Bedard, Andrew Conchas, Crystal Castaneda, Renee Steiminger, Mitchell Boring, Brandon Jacobson, Adam Potwora, Brianda Placencia, Chloe Yahner, Alex Beamer, Ethan Falls, Andrew Jespersen, Whitney Tice, Garrett Pupa, Andres Coronel, Casey O’Neill, Daisy Sumaya, Kyle Cabrera, Chloey Settles, Josh Ellison, Jonathon Lantiegene and Asia Moore.
Moore shared that at first she was a bit “wish-washy” when it came to choosing a topic. She gained inspiration while watching a news segment about the “Forgotten Children.”
“And I realized I could do something on adoption. I’m adopted, I have that connection, I’ve gone to the orphanages, I’m watching this which is something that is inspiring to me to go out and do something about it,” Moore said.
Moore didn’t have her speech written out, just some guiding bullet points, but overall she thought it went “pretty well.” Moore was one of the winners of the competition.
Senior Deshawn Jackson gave his Dragon Talk on helping with depression, titled “Path to Happiness.” He shared his own story and experiences to create a personal presentation.
“I felt like I really connected with the audience. I felt like it was more of a talk than a speech,” Jackson said. “I was just trying to connect myself more with the audience rather than just give a monotone speech and I feel that it really worked to my advantage.”
“I’m not going to say I did the best, but I’m going to say that I did well for me,” Jackson commented.
Senior Charlie Klucker’s presentation was also about adoption, more so regarding how the system is “broken and doesn’t care about the kids.”
“My inspiration was the small, little fluffy human that lives in my house,” Klucker said. Klucker’s almost 2-year-old “sister” is not yet legally her sibling because of an ongoing battle due to a Native American tribe trying to gain custody of her because she has traces of Native American descent, due to the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978.
Klucker shared that people in her audience still cried even though she felt she presented better yesterday.
The goal of the Dragon Talks is to give a parting lesson about or teach about a passion to the rest of the school.
“It just like lit a fire in my eyes, I felt like I needed to share that with someone. I need to share it with the younger audience, you know, the sophomores, just anybody,” Jackson shared.
Background Photo: The 25 seniors who passed through the final round of voting celebrated on the stage. Credit: Cherie Eulau (Used with permission).