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September 26, 2007

LINCOLN UNIVERSITY SENIOR WINS NATIONAL ORATORICAL CONTEST

LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, PA ~ Rumbidzai Tabvuma’s long-standing passion for public speaking is paying dividends for the Lincoln University senior. Tabvuma used her voluble skills to win the 34th Annual National Persuasive Oratorical Contest in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Her competitors hailed from California, Michigan and Kentucky.  She captured the first place prizes of $500 and a certificate.  She said, however, winning the title was worth much more.

“It was an opportunity to say something about a topic I believe in,” said Tabvuma, a native of Zimbabwe, Africa, majoring in accounting and French.  “You want to give the audience a message that is thought-provoking, and that’s what I tried to do.”

Tabvuma chose to speak on the effects of the irresponsible consumption of alcohol. “I had to prove that drinking alcohol is causing deterious harm in this country,” she said, “and to encourage a workable solution for abstinence to be established.”

Tabvuma recalled that her interest in public speaking began when she was about 14 years old in high school.  “I always had a keen interest in public speaking, but nothing beats practice because practice makes perfect,” she said.

Tabvuma began her winning streak when she defeated 24 contestants at Lincoln University.  Then she did likewise at the statewide competition in Harrisburg, where she beat back her state rivals from Ursinius College, Susquehanna University and Bloomsburg University.

Her confidence never wavered.

“I look at it as a challenge,” she said. “I’ve come to understand that the most effective tool is the words that come out of your mouth.”

Tabvuma said she is very pleased with her educational experience at Lincoln University.  She thanked Dean Judith Thomas of the School of Social Sciences and Behavioral Studies for being her coach and mentor.

“Rumbi is truly a gifted public speaker,” Dr. Thomas said.  “It is a pleasure to work with her. Her confidence and ability will carry her to greater heights in the future.”

Tabvuma also credits Lincoln University for her success.

“My Lincoln University experience has been very rewarding because I’ve had some professors who took me beyond the classroom,” she said. “I connected with them, and they allowed me to network with business professionals.”

That networking, she said, helped her land a position with Deloitte & Touche, one of the nation’s leading accounting firms, after graduation in May.

“I’m looking forward to working with Deloitte & Touche,” she said. “It is one of the best firms in the business.”

Tabvuma could have said that about herself in public speaking competition.

Founded in 1854, Lincoln University is a premier, historically Black University that combines the best elements of a liberal arts and sciences-based undergraduate core curriculum and selected graduate programs to meet the needs of those living in a highly technological and global society.  The University is nationally recognized as a major producer of African Americans with undergraduate degrees in the physical sciences (biology, chemistry and physics); computer and informational sciences; biological and life sciences.  Lincoln has an enrollment of 2,423 undergraduate and graduate students.

Lincoln University of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
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