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Cash Corrigan Named Winner of the 2024 W.T. Bondurant Jr. Oratorical Contest

Cash Corrigan Named Winner of the 2024 W.T. Bondurant Jr. Oratorical Contest

Published February 21, 2024

San Antonio Academy is proud to announce 6th grader Cash Corrigan as the 2024 W.T. Bondurant Jr. Oratorical Contest winner, with his essay entitled, "You are Not a Man Without Courage." Named for W. T. Bondurant Jr., president of SAA from 1960-1985, the Oratorical Contest is held annually to give Middle School students the opportunity to further develop their public speaking skills, an important aspect of The Academy curriculum. Six Academy students from grades 6-8 (two boys from each grade) present their personal essays in front of an alumni audience who volunteer to judge the contest.

oratorical contest

In his essay, Cash focused on "courage" and how he has come to interpret what the word truly means to him. He used examples of two notable and influential people who he believes have embodied what it means to have courage while also including a moment in his life where he was able to be courageous. 

He shared the story of Lebron James Jr., or "Bronny," the son of his favorite basketball player of all time. He spoke of the courage Bronny showed when he was faced with a life-threatening injury while playing the game he loved. Instead of letting it defeat him, he returned and pushed past adversity to become stronger and improve despite his setback.


He then went on to share a more personal story of how he persevered through his own struggle with homesickness while away at summer camp. He recalled constantly telling himself that he needed the courage to make it through the two weeks, despite wanting to return home, and that, in the end, the reward and sense of accomplishment would be greater than his struggle. 

"Having courage in the presence of adversity, no matter what adversity looks like to you, and coming out the other side stronger, is the best feeling in the world," Cash explained. 

Additionally, he spoke of a person he considered to personify courage. He explained how the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. displayed some of the most remarkable courage by leading and demonstrating great love and kindness to all people, even his enemies.

Cash concluded his speech by challenging his audience to be just as courageous as the examples he brought before them.

"When the times in your life are getting tough, have enough courage to stand up to your challenge, look it in the face, and say, 'I can take you!'" said Cash.

Congratulations, Cash, and well done to all of our 2024 Oratorical Contest participants: CD V. (7th grade), Max B. (8th grade), Sam S. (8th grade), Cash C. (6th grade), Mateo N. (6th grade), and Callum C. (7th grade).

Also, a huge thank you to our nine Academy alumni who volunteered their time to judge the contest and provide encouragement to become effective orators.

oratorical contest- alumni judges


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