Contestants participating in the Rotary Four-Way Speech
Competition include, from left, Warren Chen (3rd Place), Xiadani De La Limes,
Caitlin McMahon, Abigail Brown (2nd Place), Medha (Mei) Dasgupta (1st Place),
Kailyn Sung,Xaria Songole (Runner Up), Kenia Salazar.
Bishop Guertin High School junior, Medha (Mei) Dasgupta, took the top prize in the Rotary Club of Nashua and Nashua West’s Four-Way Test Speech Contest on March 13th for the second year in a row. With first place, the Bishop Guertin junior won $600 and an opportunity to compete in the next two phases of the contest at the Rotary District 7870 competition in Henniker and then finals in Lebanon on Saturday, April 29th.
Second place in the competition was awarded to Abigail Brown, a freshman also from Bishop Guertin and third place went to Warren Chen, a senior at Bishop Guertin. The second and third place winners were awarded $400 and $200, respectively.
The first round of the competition was held at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Nashua and was sponsored by both the Rotary Club of Nashua and the Rotary Club of Nashua West.
Each year, Four Way Test Speech contestants are asked to deliver original speeches, five to seven minutes in length, on a variety of topics. These topics should be of current interest and use concepts from the Four Way Test in the body of the speech. Mei Dasgupta spoke on college admissions and applied the Four-Way Test to her arguments. Abigail Brown addressed suicide and Warren Chen talked about teaching people how to debate.
The Four Way Test was written in 1932 at the height of the Great Depression by Herbert J. Taylor, a Chicago Rotarian who later became President of Rotary International (1954-55). It was used by Taylor as a basis in determining ethical decisions at a company which was on the verge of bankruptcy. This 24-word test enabled his employees to change the direction of the company and has been credited with having saved the company. The Four Way Test was adopted by Rotary International in 1943 and has been translated into more than a hundred different languages.