Learning a new language pays off

Fizza Shaji.

Original photo from Renison University College. 

UWaterloo students put their language skills to the test at the National Japanese Speech Contest in Calgary last weekend.

The Canadian Association for Japanese Language Education hosted the contest to allow students who are learning Japanese in university to present speeches to a panel of judges. Successful students move through different rounds including regionals, provincials, and finally nationals.

Science student Fizza Shaji delivered her winning speech at nationals entitled "Deep Connections", impressing the judges and taking first prize in the beginners category.

When they announced the result for first place, all I remember feeling was "Whoa, what just happened!" It was a very pleasant surprise and I hope it will motivate everyone around me to not be afraid to venture into uncharted territory - especially when it comes to languages. –Fizza Shaji

Fizza is thankful to her Japanese professors, Eri-sensei, Kumiko-sensei and Fumie-sensei, who helped her through the process.

This achievement wouldn't have been possible without their continuous support. I am forever grateful for all their patience, help, and time. Amazing professors like them make learning a language an even more enjoyable experience. –Fizza Shaji

First place was also awarded to two other Waterloo students. Pryangka Rao took first place in the intermediate category and Annie Zhong took first place in the advanced category. 

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