To provide a forum in which individuals, students of Dominican and outside parties, are encouraged to demonstrate their public speaking abilities. There is a focus on improving public speaking ability in terms of scripted as well as impromptu speaking. In essence, Dominican Toastmasters provides a lot of freedom in terms of exercising public speaking ability but also provides a guideline and method. It is the goal of Toastmasters to form a club that not only has a cohesive social bond that facilitates progress but demonstrates all the aspects of excellence of public speaking in all its members.
Members have a series of speeches to perform that are specified in a manual, which the member will receive upon initiation. Each speech has a different requirement and time lengths vary. All speeches are evaluated not only by an assigned evaluator but also by the whole session through a collection of forms. These evaluations are instrumental in measuring the speaker's progress.
Toastmaster's operates on a schedule that is well regimented. The toastmaster has some discretion as to the direction of the meeting but he or she must adhere to the structure. Time is recorded and monitored and members are educated on the roles and procedures of the club upon initiation. There is also a correspondence through email that transmits pertinent information to members.
Positions such as President and Vice President have a term of one year and are recommended based on the consensus of most of the club's members and the willingness of the individual. Normally such positions are indicative of strong leadership skills as well as a certain level of experience in Toastmasters.
Toastmasters is a very inclusive club. Opportunities will be given to individuals to occupy different roles pertaining to the function of the club. These roles include toastmaster, table topics master, timer, grammarian, speakers, speech evaluators, and general evaluator. These roles allow for the individual to become more comfortable with exercising authority as well as the dynamics of the club. There are no prerequisites for being in Toastmasters. First time members are encouraged to give speeches as well as occupy any one of the roles. Individuals who find that they are struggling in their classes in terms of performance anxiety or lacking in presentation fundamentals are encouraged to attend. In fact, students can practice their presentations from other classes in Toastmasters. Any speaker has the opportunity to attend regional contests where they will compete in different speech categories.
Individuals of all backgrounds, professions, and ages can participate in Toastmasters. Every individual brings a new perspective and style of speech. Although some individuals are more proficient than others, you will find that even the most novice speaker has a creative potential and a vivid history.
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