5.Guidelines 2019


 We are accepting application now.  Deadline is going to be postponed to 2/28.  

this special mug-cup gift we prepared for all those who compete,  wishing this cup will be on your side for a long time!  

General Guidelines:

from the Committee to you all;


We understand that contestants desire to win the big prizes at our Speech Contest. These prizes have been created or donated through the hard work and goodwill of many people who want to see the relations between Japan and the United States grow every year through honesty and a good heart. We sincerely appeal to each contestant that even though resources like Google Translate and other internet solutions as well as the ability to email or Skype with native Japanese speaking friends and family exist, please write your own, unique and original speech. It is in the act of writing and polishing that your skills improve and you reach a deeper understanding of both speech writing and language usage, but of yourself. Thank you for understanding. We look forward to seeing everyone in March!         



1* Must not be a native speaker of the Japanese language. 
2* Must currently be enrolled in high school or college/university in San Diego County. Enrollment in a Japanese program is not mandatory as long as the student is currently a registered student at high school or college/university.
3* Must not have had more than six months of schooling in Japan after age reaching the 
Japanese compulsory education starting age.
4* Must not have been raised in a Japanese-speaking household. (Must not live in a home with a native speaker of Japanese (including spouse, parent/grandparent/relation, etc.)
5* Must be either a U.S. citizen, permanent resident of the U.S. and a resident of San Diego County, or possess any visa with the exception of F-1 Visa. Any Individuals currently attending school, college or university on a F-1 student visa are unfortunately ineligible.
6* Must be prepared to receive a phone call by a committee member in case any parts of the written application are unclear. 
7* Must submit a copy of handwritten speech draft. It should be scanned and attached with the application. The draft must be received by the end of February. This draft does not need to be the final version presented at the competition. Again, application itself should be accepted by February 23.
8* Must answer a preliminary short questionnaire regarding the Japan Homestay Award inquiries. 
9* Must answer all the questions in the application form sincerely to the best of their knowledge. 


* Should be between 3-4 minutes in length, and must not be shorter than three
  minutes, not longer than five minutes.  
* Choice of topic is open.
* Must be original and written by the contestant himself/herself. We ask you to submit a handwritten speech draft, but it will not be used for any part of judging. 


Judges will base their decisions on content and presentation of speech. There will be short interviews in Japanese with the judges after each speech presentation. The contestants with highest total points awarded by the judges will be the winners.

Content (selection of theme, originality, creativity, and ability to touch the audience’s heart)

Structure (how well the speech is organized and how logically and smoothly the argument or the content flows)

Japanese language:

Japanese language (appropriate use of sentence structure and vocabulary, and accuracy of pronunciation and accent—or comprehensibility)

Over-all impression:

Over-all impression (attitude, posture, voice audibility, connection with the audience, including eye contact; and fluency)

Interview responses:

Interview responses with clear and appropriate answers.

Total (/50 points

 About the Japan Travel Award:

The prize package, a collaboration of the goodwill of many people, has to be given to someone who not only wins the college level First Place but also appreciates it the hospitality that the prize represents.  This trip award will be given to someone who loves adventure and can make a plan voluntarily under guidance based on basic conditions.  The winner will stay some nights with a host family in Odate City, the famous dog Hachiko’s hometown, for exploration. The winner will also travel in such areas as Kanto, Kansai, Nagoya or Sapporo with homestay families and meet many people who want to learn about American culture just as you want to learn about Japanese culture for true cultural exchange. The basic transportation fees are included. (Round-trip ticket to Japan via JAL, one week JR pass to be used after Odate program is complete, and nights in Odate and one week after Odate, some hotels and trains and buses, etc. might be paid out of the traveler's own pocket.)

Requirement: Within two (2) weeks of returning to the USA, the winner must make a quick report of the experience to share with the committee, as we will publish the report on Facebook, etc. including photos and so on. The winner will be willing to come back as a special visitor to the next year's contest to speak about the trip to encourage the audience and contestants. Furthermore, this trip is by the winner alone; no family members or friends are included in the package though they may meet you when this award trip completes. This JAL's round-trip award ticket is valid for up to one month from the departure date in San Diego, as you will read the details on the ticket certificate. The JAL certificate as well as JR pass certificate are both important and they need to be safely kept. 

The winner needs to make travel arrangements with the SDJSC committee, JAL representative, Odate City Hospitality staff and "Homestay in Japan" coordinators to make the plan active in a timely manner. If the SDJSC committee deems the first-place winner inappropriate for the trip award, due to schedule or character, the committee has the right to transfer the award to the next place winner and so on at its sole discretion.  

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask the committee at SDJSCC@gmail.com

San Diego Japanese Speech Contest Committee
ATTN: Tachibana, Chair
P. O. Box 28884, San Diego, CA 92198

Email: SDJSCC@gmail.com