State of the Community 2016 Competition


THE GOAL: Building a social movement to provide answers to today's pressing issues as a counter discourse to extremist voices

  • With the above goal in mind, select a famous quote or create your own phrase that reflects an idea that will generate positive change or solution to current global issues. Explain the Phrase, and why it matters in 1,000 words. Jury will select 5 to 10 finalists by October 25, 2016. The finalists' presentations will be screened at the conference. These finalists can either present in person at the conference, or we will screen their presentations on their behalf. The finalists' essays and presentations will also be published on our website. Example of a Phrase: “Your Rights End, Where Mine Begin
  • Deadline to submit the Phrase and the essay is October 20, 2016
  • See further details in the COMPETITION RULES section below.
  • The winning phrase will be announced and awarded during the award ceremony at the conference on November 21, 2016 [See schedule details on the program page].
  • This winning phrase will become the coming year’s theme for the Dhillon Marty Foundation’s Global Citizen Education Initiatives.


  • Participation in the Phrase of the Year Competition is open to students in high school and university (undergraduate and graduate programs).
  • Participation is open to individuals or teams. A team must designate a representative to facilitate communication between the team and the Dhillon Marty Foundation.
  • Entries must meet all RULES (listed below) and deadline.


  • Submit your phrase with a 1,000 word essay supporting your argument.
  • 5 to 10 Phrases will be selected as finalists by the jury.
  • In cases of identical ideas, the entry with the more compelling argument will be selected.
  • Additionally, selected finalist will prepare a 5 to 7 minute video or a slideshow. A poster or other visual aids are allowed with prior review and approval (a poster no bigger than 1x1.5 meters). 
  • Presentation time limit: 7 minutes (Suggested breakdown: 5 minute video  or slideshow + 2 minute QA session).
    • Presentation should show why the Phrase is relevant to our global society, and how to engage people from around the world in a constructive dialogue to make informed critical and conscientious thinkers for a sustainable world.
  • Deadline to submit the phrase and the essay is October 20, 2016.
  • The finalists will be informed via email and announced on our website by October 25, 2016.
  • These finalists will be asked to submit a presentation either as a video or a slideshow by November 10, 2016.
  • These finalists' presentations and their essays will be displayed on our website, and the online voting will start on November 11, 2016.
  • The finalists' presentations will be screened at the conference on November 21, 2016 [See schedule details on the program page]. All the presentations will be screened with or without the team being physically present at the conference.
  • The total tally of online voting and the in-house voting during the screening session at the conference will determine the winner.
  • The winner will be announced at the award ceremony on November 21, 2016 [See schedule details on the program page].
  • The Foundation has the right to use all the documentation submitted by the participants.
  • The winning team must be available to participate in the Foundation's activities throughout the year to build the discourse around the phrase.


Giving a presentation, especially one that requires brevity, is never an easy task. This short guide aims to help you create a presentation that effectively delivers your amazing idea and thoughts.

Here are the four simple steps needed to create and give a presentation (+ tips):

1. Choose a Phrase
  • Do some brainstorming and research as much as necessary for ideas. Since it is a “Phrase” and not a paragraph, it is absolutely necessary to narrow your ideas to one core message.
  • Make sure it is concise and catchy, as it must be easily understood and remembered by people. Think of it as an elevator pitch – although you will back it up with a presentation, the Phrase alone should be able to express everything.
2. Make an outline (and scripts and/or slides, if necessary) An example of a presentation structure:
  • Make your audience care (explain the current global situation, using relatable/known examples of current/historical events and phenomenon)
  • Explain your Phrase (clearly and with conviction)
  • Describe your evidence
  • Call to action (WHY your Phrase matters to the world, convince people to vote for your Phrase to become the Phrase of the Year)
  • Reveal the new reality (HOW can the idea reflected by your Phrase be implemented in real life? How will that change the world?)
  • Ask yourself the following:
  • Are the Phrase and the presentation innovative and interesting
  • Is it fact-based?
  • Are the idea of the Phrase and the presentation structure clear/logical enough for people who have never heard this Phrase?
    • Practice makes perfect. No matter how many times you have given a presentation, you will be speaking to a completely new audience with a new purpose.
    • Film yourself talking, watch the video, and see where you can improve. Give each other feedbacks among the team and if possible, practice in front of non-team members to receive their feedback.

    Things to keep in mind while practicing:

    • Posture: Stand still (don’t shift your weight sideways) and look confident.
    • Eye contact: Make eye contact with your audience. You don’t have to stare into the eyes of everyone in the audience, but keep them engaged.
    • Speed: Make sure you are not talking too fast or slow. To figure out the appropriate pace, watch (and imitate) speeches performed by great orators like Barack Obama, Steve Jobs, etc.
    • Smile: If appropriate, try to smile. It not only helps you reduce your anxiety but also keeps the audience engaged.
    4. Prepare your presentation- video/slideshow (with confidence – you earned it!)
    Sample presenation sytle ideas: