TUFS Students Win Prizes in Cambodian Speech Contest

May 16, 2023

On Saturday, April 29, 2023, the Cambodian speech contest 2023 (organized by the Royal Cambodian Embassy in Japan with the support of the Honorary Consulate of the Kingdom of Cambodia in Sendai, Honorary Consulate of the Kingdom of Cambodia in Fukuoka, Taica, SBI Remit, and NX Shoji) was held at the Embassy in Akasaka. Ms. Nana Kamiyama (3rd year, Faculty of International Social Studies) won 1st place, Ms. Hiori Tazawa (3rd year, Faculty of International Social Studies) won 2nd place, Ms. Narumi Ito (4th year, Faculty of International Social Studies) and Ms. Saki Yamada (4th year, Faculty of Language and Culture) won 3rd place, and Ms. Shino Nakajima (3rd year, Faculty of International Social Studies) won 5th place.

A total of 15 university students and 3 working adults competed in the finals of this year’s contest. The four judges were from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a representative of the Cambodian community in Japan, an NPO, and the president of the Association of Cambodian Students in Japan.

Ms. Kamiyama gave a speech about the meaning of the word “No problem” in Cambodian. She talked about her internship in a Cambodian farming village, where she realized that the word “No problem” in Cambodian is not just used to be polite to others, but also to be generous and compassionate. In addition to her excellent command of Cambodian, she was highly praised for her ability to use gestures and speak directly to the audience.

Ms. Tazawa talked about how, when she visited Cambodia as a high school student on a study tour, she saw a local community formed around a temple and child care center, and saw its potential to contribute to solving social problems in Japan.

Ms. Ito shared her experience of homestaying with a Cambodian family for about a year and talked about the differences in the way families are perceived in Cambodia and Japan.

Ms. Yamada talked about the use of metaphors to describe the beauty found in Cambodian literary works.

Ms. Nakajima talked about the way characters are portrayed in Cambodian literary works.

The five winners received a 5-day/4-night tour of Cambodia and a commemorative plaque. All participants also received a commemorative gift from the Cambodian Ambassador.

After the ceremony, all participants were served buffet-style Cambodian cuisine and enjoyed a pleasant time.

A portion of Ms. Kamiyama’s speech can be viewed here.



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