Pathways with George

Preface:

GeorgeGeorge is a returning Toastmaster and he wants to renew his journey by rejoining a local club and enrolling in Pathways at Toastmasters.org. His challenges, achievements and experiences are shared with his new clubs in Australia and Online as he proceeds. He is now regionally based, after moving back to his country home town from time away in the capital cities of Melbourne and Sydney. He decides to visit the clubs in the North East region of Victoria.

His first visits are in Area N29; Albury Wodonga Toastmasters, Indigo Speakers and Wangaratta Toastmasters. George finds out how the club meetings are conducted in each club and looks for help from them in getting back into Toastmasters. He also attends the Club Leadership Training session in Thurgoona, just the other side of the Murray River, in Area M34. It is here that he first learns about the new Pathways Education program, and is immediately ‘hooked’. Intrigued by the new Pathways opportunities he plans ahead to achieve a Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) award in the new program by 2020.

Follow George’s Pathways experiences by keeping up with his story in this blog!

Chapter 1: Club Experience

club experienceGeorge decides to join the Indigo Speakers whose meetings are held at venues not far from his home town in Beechworth. [Long drives on country roads late at night, are not his strong suit!] Prior to the meeting he receives an email reminding him of the location, time and what to bring. He decides to bring a friend! His friend has never experienced Toastmasters club meetings before and needs an orientation into the club experience. George sends her this video link, the club experience, from the Video library at Toastmasters International.

George is pleased to see that the club meetings in regional Victoria are conducted in much the same way as he has experienced some years back. They have a friendly and welcoming appeal to him, and he notices his friend immediately relaxes. The community hall in the small town of Wooragee is well appointed offering flexible space, a fully functioning kitchen and a very pleasant ‘country’ ambiance.

At the meeting George realizes that there is still great structure and purpose in each meeting, guided by the Agenda and the Toastmaster of the Day. Attendees provide a welcoming atmosphere and there is much laughter. He feels confident enough to take on two minor meeting roles, the Ah counter and Grammarian, just to get back into the ‘club experience’. He notices that supper plays a big part in the networking and camaraderie at this meeting – several members bring along a plate of food to share. During the break, George has a chance to talk with a few members and finds out what it is that keeps bringing them back.

During the meeting he has the pleasure of listening to speakers who are either finishing their speech projects in a manual called ‘Competent Communicator’ from the old program, or who are just beginning to deliver speech projects from their chosen Path in the new program.

He is entertained and enlightened by each segment of the meeting and notices that his friend Georgina, agrees to participate in the Table Topics segment on one of her favourite impromptu topics – openness in family and community relationships!

George and Georgina are now both inspired to continue their journey into Pathways!

Chapter 2: George Chooses a Path

choose a pathWith the help of his mentor, George, now plans how to proceed in his new journey into the Pathways Program.

Move on to Chapter 2 to find out what George does next!