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When it comes to public speaking, personally I have always found myself in a strange minority – I really enjoy it. Ever since I was in primary school and was always given the longest readings to say in church, I’ve quite liked standing up in front of a crowd. However for most people this really is not the case which is unfortunate since public speaking is pretty hard to avoid here at uni. This issue’s ‘Meet the Society’ column features a group who are helping people come round to the idea that public speaking doesn’t have to be a cause of stress, it can be fun.
How would you describe your society to a newcomer?
Glossophobia is the fear of public speaking. 75% of the population are said to suffer from it. However, there is a cure; Lancaster University Public Speaking Society. The society is designed for students interested in improving their speaking and communication skills in a safe space. The main objective of the society is to inculcate confidence of communication within all our members. We continue to grow every year and, aim to be a society that prepares our members for the major challenges of the future since communication is integral to any industry. Public Speaking is just like a sport, you need to Practice! Practice! Practice! to get better at it.
Describe a typical society meeting…
As a member you have 2 options in our meeting:
Option 1: You take our Public Speaking Course which is a set of 10 prepared speeches dealing with all the various areas that help you become a good speaker from structure, body language, eye contact etc. You get a certificate from us once you have finished 10- speeches to show your employer.
Option 2: You just participate in the impromptu speeches and attend our skills seminars.
What qualities and skills do you feel that you get out of the LUPSS?
The society teaches members a remarkably wide spectrum of skills in addition to public speaking. This includes creative writing, independence of thought and expression, and deeper listening skills whilst helping dispel the common fears associated with Public Speaking.
What has been your favourite moment as a part of the society so far?
Our favourite moment as a part of the society was probably the event we co-hosted with the Advertising Society. We had an Elevator Pitch challenge which got almost everyone in the room excited to speak! We think the event was fun and people did walk away having learnt something.
What plans have you got for the upcoming year? Potential socials, competitions etc.?
We plan to host a guest speaker real soon and also have a talk on utilising Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) in Public Speaking which would provide an insight as to how certain techniques can be harnessed to overcome common fears associated with Public Speaking.
How would someone new go about getting involved?
All they would have to do is send us a message on our Facebook page and we would tell them where our next event is and what it’s about or follow our Facebook page for updates.