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5 things you need to know about Lakeside Speakeasy Toastmasters

Davontae Foxx-Drew, UCOP Systemwide Human Resources Fellow & Toastmasters Member

Have you ever listened to an engaging speaker and wondered how they mastered the skills to enthrall their audience? Consider this: They may be a member of Toastmasters International, a worldwide organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills.

If you’ve been curious about Toastmasters, here’s what you need to know.

Top 5 things to know about Lakeside Speakeasy Toastmasters

  1. Toastmasters is open to UCOP staff at all career levels. You don’t need to hold a leadership position to learn leadership-level skills. “The club provides a variety of speakers who all come from different career sectors,” says Davontae Foxx-Drew, Systemwide Human Resources Fellow.
  1. We can help you develop personally and professionally in many ways. Our members build strong leadership skills, improve both speaking and presentation, gain self-confidence and boost their ability to collaborate and inspire others. “Joining Toastmasters is a great way to not only improve your public speaking skills, but your communication skills in general. I have learned a lot in my first year,” says Toastmasters member Nick Anthis, a program officer in the Environmental Health & Health Policy division.
  1. Moving meetings online for the pandemic has helped us perfect a new skillset: We can help you succeed at speaking and presenting virtually, too! “Joining the Lakeside Speakeasy Toastmaster’s Club has been a highlight of this tumultuous year,” says Davontae. “I value the sense of community the club offers, especially given that most of us are currently working full-time remotely.”
  1. We love sharing our knowledge with you! Invite our members for a team meeting to help your colleagues boost presentation skills. Recently, Gemma Rieser and Nicola Gruen presented to California Digital Library’s WorkHacks group, providing an overview of the club and offering strategies and live exercises for speaking on Zoom.
  1. New members are always welcome — and it’s easy to join. “I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I showed up as a guest to one meeting,” recalls Nicholas. “Everyone at the Lakeside Speakeasy Toastmasters club was incredibly welcoming. I could tell I had found a fun and supportive environment, so I signed up right away!”

“I’m excited every week to tune into our meetings, either as a listener or speaker,” says Davontae. “If you’re looking to enhance your public speaking skills, I highly recommend attending our next club meeting.”

For membership information, visit us online email Gemma Rieser or Nicola Gruen directly. Learn more about the Lakeside Speakeasy Toastmasters Club.

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