MLK Communications Contest

2018 — Wilmington, DE/US


Abbreviation OO
Format Speech
Entry Fee $0.00
Entry 1 competitors per entry

Event Description:


The YWCA Delaware and Christ Church Christiana Hundred are pleased to present the




Sunday, January 14, 2018

2 PM – the baby grand, Wilmington


An opportunity for Delaware high school youth to:




REFLECT - What would Dr. King have to say about the last 50 years since his tragic death on April 4th, 1968?  Contestants are asked to reflect on Dr. King’s life and work for social justice, the present, and the future.


COMMUNICATE – Your reflections with community leaders using speech, poetry, and/or rap.


INSPIRE – Others to take action to effect positive, sustainable change through nonviolence.

Purpose of the MLK Communication Contest  

·         Encourage youth to reflect on the life and mission of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. within the context of their lives and the communities in which they live.   To contemplate how Dr. King’s work speaks to their aspirations as well as to the needs of their communities.

·         Provide an opportunity for youth to publicly communicate their reflections based on Dr. King’s legacy.

·         Inspire youth to share with community leaders what action they might exercise in light of Dr. King’s witness.


Reasons to participate

·         Develop oratorical and presentation skills to effectively communicate ideas.

  • Enhance young people’s social awareness, academic potential, build confidence, self-esteem, & cultivate leadership skills to serve them academically and professionally in their future pursuits.
  • Cash prizes as follows:  First Prize:  $1,000 to one First Place winner; $500 to one Second Place winner; & $250 to one Third Prize winner.
  • All contestants registered by December 1, 2017 are invited to attend a free workshop on presentation and oratorical skills and/or writing skills.

·         All contestants will receive a certificate of participation.

  • Finalists have the option to receive a personalized 1 hour coaching session prior to the finals.


Rules & Regulations:

  • Message must be original.
  • The content of the message must relate to the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Contestants are encourage to memorize their presentations; 4”x 6” cue cards are permitted, but not to be read.
  • Presentations are to be approximately 5 minutes long.
  • Contestants must have an adult sponsor (21 years or older) to support them as they prepare to compete.
  • Finalists must be willing to provide an electronic copy of their presentation.
  • Participants are not permitted to leave the stage during their presentations.
  • Audio, costumes and props are NOT permitted.
  • Past winners of the MLK Communication Contest are not eligible to compete.
  • The decisions of the judges are final.


The following topics are provided for consideration.  These suggestions are not to be limiting in any respect.  Presentations are to relate to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy and message for social justice through nonviolence.


                Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. &:


Civil/Human Rights

                Cyberbullying, Twitter

                Discrimination/ Prejudice



War, Terrorism

Acceptance, Respect

Social Change





The finalists and winner will be selected by a panel of judges selected by Members of the MLK Planning Committee.  Emphasis will be placed on the message presented through the creative use of speech, poetry, and/or rap.  Criteria for judging will include:  originality, creativity, audience rapport, organization, and preparation.  The decision of the judges is final.


Time & Location

Workshop A - Presentation &                   Saturday, December 9, 2017

Oratorical Skills                               Christ Church Christiana Hundred

Workshop B – Writing Skills                     9 AM – 4 PM


Webinars on above workshops                TBA


Semi-Finals (Selection of Finalists) –    Saturday, January 6, 2018          

                                                                                The Episcopal Church of Saints Andrew & Matthew

                                                                                719 N. Shipley Street, Wilmington, DE

                                                                                Time - TBD       


Finals (Selection of Prize Winners) –    Sunday, January 14, 2018 – 2 PM                                                                                                                                                                            the baby grand

                                                                                818 N. Market Street, Wilmington, DE


Entering the Contest

The contest is open to all Delaware high school students, Grades 9-12.  Participants must have an adult sponsor willing to help them prepare for the contest and support them through the process.  Registration begins on International Peace Day, Thursday, September 21, 2017.  To register visit:  Registration will be limited to the first 75 sponsored registrants who will receive a confirmation email advising them of their entry into the contest.  The MLK Planning Committee reserves the right to limit the number of participants from any one high school/organization.



Registration will be strictly on-line.


For more information contact:

Matt Pillischer

YWCA Delaware

(302) 655-0039 ext. 230

Jane Rubini

Christ Church Christiana Hundred

(302) 655-3379