Jo's Tell All

April 28, 2010
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Model Congress and Student Congress are similar clubs that both involve bills, and once to twice a week the members of the clubs debate in favor of the bill or against it. Model Congress is a popular club among the students, while Student Congress has fewer members. After the debate, the other students vote on either to pass or fail the bill. Recently I sat down with Model Congress and Student Congress superstar Jo Goodman, who is a freshman of Roslyn High School. She has only been in Model Congress and Student Congress for a year, but already has gone to several competitions and has won numerous awards. In this interview, she gives me an inside perspective about Model Congress and Student Congress and her success.

DG: Have you lived in Roslyn your entire life?

JG: No I haven’t, I lived in the city until I was 5.

DG: What are your hobbies when you are not studying?

JG: I love art, creative writing, soft ball, and hanging out with friends.

DG: Why are you so interesting in public speaking?

JG: It gives me a way to express myself and demonstrate my speaking ability.

DG: You are in both Student Congress and Model Congress right? What are the differences between the clubs?

JG: Model Congress has 1 minute and 30 second speeches and it’s not very serious. Student Congress has 3 minute speeches and it’s less impromptu.

DG: How do you prepare for a Student Congress or a Model Congress competition?

JG: I find the title of the bill to be debated and I look up statistics and current events pertaining to the matter.

DG: What is your favorite aspect of public speaking and why?

JG: I love the competitions and my speaking clubs allow me to compete in something that I love.

DG: What is your least favorite aspect of public speaking and why?

JG: A couple days before hand I get nervous and I hate being nervous. But usually on the day of the competition I am not nervous.

DG: How many different competitions have you had to go through this year? Which one was your favorite?

JG: I went to four competitions and I had two favorite, Student Congress at Hofsta and Colombia Model Congress. I was supposed to go to Penn Model Congress, but it got cancelled because of the weather.

DG: Do you prefer to speak off the top of your head, or have something practiced beforehand?

JG: I prefer to have notes, but I really don’t have any speeches memorized.

DG: Who would you go to if you ever needed advice on a speech or a competition?

JG: Olivia Cocoa and my dad [Jayant Goodmer]

DG: How did your parents react to your public speaking success?

JG: My parents were very excited for me and said I deserved every award I got because of my preparation beforehand.

DG: Are you excited for your first State Tournament? Nervous? Mixed emotions?

JG: I have been excited for the tournament for a month.

DG: Your in ninth grade now, so would you stay with Student Congress and Model Congress for the next three years? Or would you try and join new clubs for a different experience?

JG: I plan on forwarding my involvement with these two clubs, but I am in two different clubs besides Model Congress and Student Congress.

DG: When you are older, would you go into a career that involves public speaking? Explain your answer.

JG: I would love to go into a career that involves public speaking, but it also has to have a creative aspect to it.

DG: Are you going to apply for a leadership position? And if you are, why?

JG: I am running for board position in Model Congress, but Student Congress is a chosen so I really have no say.

DG: What words of wisdom do you have to tell the 8th graders that might join Model Congress or Student Congress next year?

JG: Join early so you have an increase time for practicing and to improve yourself. It’s not worth it to be nervous, just have fun.

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