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Hanscom Toastmasters offering Speechcraft program in July

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- The Hanscom Toastmasters Club will conduct an eight-week Speechcraft program beginning in early July for anyone who wishes to improve speaking and leadership skills.

Speechcraft is a program that is similar to a traditional club meeting, although more intensive with “how-to” lessons conducted by experienced club members. 

“The last time we did a Speechcraft program was in 2015 or 2016, so it’s been a little while,” said Shelley Rosenbaum Lipman, an engineer here, and Hanscom Toastmasters Club treasurer. “We’re very excited to bring this opportunity to the Hanscom community.”

During the program, an individual toastmaster will assist participants in preparing their products, provide guidance and feedback, and mentor each “speechcrafter.” As the program continues, the speechcrafters will gradually take on more and more of the meeting leadership roles.

“Toastmasters is not just a communication organization, it’s a leadership organization,” said Rosenbaum Lipman. “Speechcraft is an opportunity for people to boost their confidence and develop their speaking and leadership skills.”

According to its website, Toastmasters is an international communications and leadership organization with nearly 350,000 members in over 16,000 clubs worldwide. Toastmasters “learn by doing,” in a supportive atmosphere where club members hone their skills during regular meetings by conducting prepared speeches, doing impromptu speaking on “table topics,” and evaluating each other’s performance.

Toastmasters has a number of different pathways for members to explore and develop proficiency in, depending on their interests. Leadership Development, Presentation Mastery, and Innovative Planning are just some of the 11 pathways that are available.

“How you select a topic, how you introduce a speaker, how you use gestures are just some of the things you can learn,” said Rosenbaum Lipman. “You may want to know more about how to motivate people or you may want to learn about team building. There is something here for everyone.”

Toastmasters, and the Speechcraft program, is open to everyone at Hanscom and in the surrounding communities, not just Air Force employees.

Because of COVID-19, Hanscom Toastmasters meetings are currently virtual, and will continue that way for the time being.

The speechcraft training sessions are free, but you must be a member or join the Hanscom Toastmasters club in order to take advantage of this Speechcraft program.

Those interested in participating can contact Rosenbaum Lipman at shellEy@LipmanFamily.org.