The Member for Maribyrnong, Bill Shorten, has urged students from schools across Melbourne’s West to take part in the My First Speech competition, to mark the 25th anniversary of Parliament House in Canberra.
The competition has been announced by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Anna Burke.
“This competition will provide the opportunity for two lucky students to come to Canberra in its centenary year and deliver a speech at Parliament House during our 25th anniversary Open Day being held on 24 August,” Ms Burke said.
“It is a great way for schools around the country to connect with our federal parliament and our national capital during an important year for both.”
The competition asks year 10 to 12 students to consider what they would say if they were a newly elected Member of the House of Representatives and record themselves presenting the speech on video. From the entries received, two students will be selected to go to Canberra and deliver their speeches at Parliament House Open Day on Saturday, 24 August 2013.
Alongside the trip to Canberra, the winning students and their schools will also receive a cash prize.
“Students will be able to research the speeches their federal MPs delivered when they first entered parliament and also think about the issues that matter to them,” Ms Burke said.
A website has been established for the competition at: www.aph.gov.au/myfirstspeech
Mr Shorten said he would like to see students enter the competition from schools across the electorate of Maribyrnong, which takes in local government areas of Moonee Valley, Maribyrnong and Brimbank.
“Across this diverse electorate I am sure there are many, many students in years 10, 11 and 12 who have an enormous contribution to make to our public debate and the future direction of our nation,” Mr Shorten said.
“As I said in my own first speech to parliament in 2008, this is an electorate which tells the Australian story of the 20th and 21st centuries, and I would love to hear the views of our next generation of leaders.”
Details of the competition will be sent to schools across Australia. When the competition was first held in 2011 it attracted 176 entries from 68 schools across Australia, and the winners were applauded by MPs during Question Time in the House.
Contact: (Mr Shorten’s office) Jayne Edwards 9326 1300 / 0410 455 737
Andrew Dawson, media manager, International & Community Relations Office, Parliament of Australia Tel: (02) 6277 2063 wk, 0401 143 724 mob.