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NTU Student Xin-Hui Lin Won Top Prize in the 2008
National Intercollegiate Japanese Speech Contest

In order to encourage people to cultivate interest in learning Japanese language, and to promote Sino-Japanese cultural exchange, The Japanese Research Institute of Taiwan held the finals of the "2008 National Intercollegiate Japanese Speech Contest" on November 29th in the Taiwan Normal University. This year's contest was co-organized by the Sino-Japanese Culture and Education Foundation, the Sino-Japanese Academic Research Foundation, the Academic Foundation for Asia Pacific Culture and Economy, the Chen Chung-Kwang Cultural and Education Foundation, etc., and implemented under the tutelage of the Ministry of Education.

Participation in this year's Intercollegiate Japanese Speech Contest has been very enthusiastic. After the preliminaries, a total of 22 contestants were selected for the finals. A panel of judges comprised of representatives from the Japan Interchange Association, Taipei Japanese School, Sankei Shimbun and Jiji News Agency's correspondents stationed in Taiwan asked the finalists to make an impromptu speech on a topic assigned to them on the spot (the topics were decided by lots drawing) and answer questions raised by the panel of judges. After these procedures, the judges gave their evaluation by tendering a score for each individual contestant. This speech contest has been held for six years and has won critical acclaim from many sectors of society. Therefore, many high schools and vocational schools in Taiwan expressed their wishes that a similar contest could be held at the high school level. The topics for this year's contest revolved around six major themes: 1) financial crisis; 2) environmental protection; 3) saving energy; 4) global warming; 5) computer and high-tech living; 6) cultural interchange for the youth.

The winners for this year's contest are as follows:

Top Prize - Xin-hui Lin (National Taiwan University ) Cash Reward: N.T. 30,000
2nd Place - Mei-wen Wang (Ming-Chuang University) Cash Reward: N.T. 25,000
3rd Place - Wen-ting Ye (Fu Jen Catholic University) Cash Reward: N. T. 15,000
4th Place - Ellen Lin (Fu Jen Catholic University) Cash Reward: N.T. 10,000
5th Place - Zhang Jin-jing (National Taiwan University) Cash Reward: N.T. 6,000.

This year sets itself apart from previous years not only in terms of the number of participants but also in the quality of the contestants, said the office of the Secretariat of the Japan Research Institute of Taiwan. The advancement in the contestants' Japanese proficiency is indicative of the efforts spent on Japanese education on the part of the individual universities, said the Secretariat.

Chinese version