By: Gloria Cortes
The second annual Storytelling Slam competition was hosted in the Rochelle Center of the Thigpen Library Oct. 30 from 11:10 a.m. to 12:10 p.m.
The 12 contestants were: Abigail Wilson, Jack Coomer, Jared Clubbs, Amanda Edwards, Alex Carmen, Gregory Crenshaw, Ryan Kennedy, Michael Picchietti, Nicole Black, Tracy Lily, and Casey Collins.
Jared Clubbs was not there to present his story.
After the scheduled contestants went, a few students told their stories while people voted for the winner.
“We had five student-curated to present we got commitments from them to be there five showed up to speak. We had six students sign up for the open mic portion. In all, we heard 11 stories. Then we had three to four students answer the questions and stand up to speak at the end they were not a part of the competition,” wrote communication professor Sheri Waltz in an email.
Performance artist Jon Goode was the host for the Storytelling Slam and told several stories throughout the event.
“I think that in the course of people sharing their stories, you find out that we all have so much in common, there’s a common thread that runs through all of our lives, that we’re all just a swamp in this quilt and that these stories are the narrative string that pulls it all together,” said Goode.
The winners were Ryan Kennedy and Nicole Black who were tied for first place. Kennedy’s story was about the birth of his son, and Black’s story was about a time where she severely injured her arm.
Instead of having one winner and one runner-up, Kennedy and Black were both awarded $75 for first place.
“In public speaking class, we had to do a story for our first speech, and the teacher said to do something that is really impactful on your life. My son being born was one of those major things in my life,” said Kennedy.
“I heard there was $75 for the winner… I just wanted to say something funny,” said Black.
Waltz wrote that both Story Slams had been successful, with about 100 students attending this year.
“Our goal is to provide a platform for students and faculty to connect- to take time to celebrate our similarities and differences,” wrote Waltz.