The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) has successfully organised and held “The 1st Macao-wide English Writing and Recital Contest”, with the final round of contest and awarding ceremony held in the morning of Saturday, 21st of May, 2022, at the Auditório Centenário de Fátima in USJ Ilha Verde Campus.

The Macao-wide Contest aims to promote English language literacy and foster creativity among the local youth through poetry. It is open to all public or private elementary and secondary schools and university students across the region, attracting over 1,000 original poetries, with only 37 submissions selected to enter the final recital contest, including 15 in the Elementary school category, 15 in the Secondary category and 7 in the University category. Due to the pandemic, two contestants who were overseas in an exchange participated in the competition in the form of online live broadcast.

The participants were required to memorise and recite their works in front of a carefully selected judging panel. A total of 9 cash prizes worth of $19,000 patacas were given to the champion, first runner-up, and second runner-up of each category.

The judging panel consists of the Rector of USJ Rev. Prof. Stephen Morgan, Director of USJ English Centre (ELC) Prof. Duncan Miers, Senior Instructor from English Language Centre of the University of Macao Prof. Joshua Lee, Principal Lecturer of ELC Wesley McLaughlin, Lecturer of ELC Andrew Leong-Murphy, Lecturer of ELC Geoffrey Churchill, and Lecturer of ELC Dora Zhou.

All the submitted written works were evaluated based on their relevance, creativity and originality, coherence of form and structure, and clarity of imagery and language. Lastly, the finalists were evaluated based on stage presence and presentation, poise and spontaneity of recitation, intonation and poetic expression, and clarity of spoken words and diction during the recitation contest.

“This contest will help students build and accumulate knowledge in English poetry, cultivate their humanistic senses and aesthetic taste, discover their abilities of independent thinking, as well as the ability to explore freely and innovate independently.” said the Director of the English Center of USJ Prof. Duncan Miers.

Rector of USJ, Rev. Prof. Stephen Morgan, also commented that the response from the various schools and higher education institutions regarding the Contest has been very enthusiastic, foreseeing a future for continuity of the event. “The event was very successful in promoting English language education and poetry culture to the younger generation. The competition is expected to be held every year in the future, allowing more students to participate, thereby further enhancing their interest and language skills in English”.

USJ English Poetry Writing and Recital Contest 2022 Video: