From left to right, Chaminade's president, Brother Bernard Ploeger, SM, with four of the five finalists Utufaasili J. McDermott, Mata'uitafa Faiai, Ernesto Olmos and Annastasha M. Samu (Veronica Griffin was also a finalist). Photo courtesy of Chaminade Communications Department (Dr. Cliff Bieberly)

Chaminade’s Communication Department held its annual Mackey Speech Competition on April 16 at Ching Conference Center in Eiben.¬† The five finalists gave persuasive speeches on the theme of “making a difference.”¬† Kanoe Miller, Mahlon Moore and Tiny Tadani judged the students on their oral presentations. Ernesto Olmos, a first-year student majoring in environmental science, won $300 and first place with his speech on the effects of dams in Brazil on Amazon Native Indians. All other competitors won $50 a piece: Annastasha M. Samu, a senior majoring in Computer Science, took second place for her speech on living wills; coming in third was Mata’uitafa Faiai, a first-year student¬† majoring in Biology, who spoke on native peoples and the patenting of native healing plants; and tied for fourth were Veronica Griffin, a senior majoring in Psychology and Business, who spoke on simple changes making a difference, and Utufaasili J. McDermott, a junior majoring in religion, who spoke on offshore trading. All competitors were articulate and well prepared.