MTHS senior makes history


Jacob Cline

Miami Trace High School senior Jacob Cline broke MTHS history with a fourth place win at the District Level Rotary Contest.

On Sunday, March 26, Wright State University held The Rotary District 6670 Four-Way Test Speech Contest, where students from local high schools, private schools, and charter schools are required to give a four to six minute speech. Speakers were asked to incorporate the four Rotary principles into their speeches — “Is it the truth, Is it fair to all concerned, Will it build goodwill and better friendships, and Will it be beneficial to all concerned?”

A total of 25 students showed up to the event to compete, and all contestants delivered their speeches twice to two different panels of judges. These judges provided scores to the participants and the scores from both rounds were combined. Only the top four students then remained.

Among the winning students was Trace’s 12th-grader, Jacob Cline. The class officer and NHS scholar was the first student to make the top-four placement in Miami Trace history.

The incredible fourth place winning speech was written during Cline’s time with the Ohio State Fair Band, as he was an All Ohio State Fair Band drum major.

When asked about the competition, Cline said, “I tend to be shy when it comes to speaking, especially in front of an audience. So participating in a speech competition is not typically something I would jump to do, but I am so glad I did it. It was a great opportunity to stand before and speak to people that I otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to. In the final round, I delivered my speech in front of a large audience that included the dean of Wright State University.”

Cline’s shyness comes as a surprise as he has participated in both choir and spring musicals at Miami Trace High School. The scholar has also taken on leadership in both the student government and FFA.

When Cline was asked why he chose to compete he said, “I take speech class with Ms. West and she told us about the Rotary Four-Way Speech Contest. The competitive side of me said, ‘Go for it.’”

The “go for it” spirit in Cline was certainly evident in his willingness to start a fundraiser for the Humane Society during his freshman and senior year at Trace. According to Cline, his classmates were able to donate during school hours, and Cline would deliver the donations after school.

The MTHS senior also earned first place in the Washington Court House Rotary Four-Way Speech Contest, qualifying him for the District Contest, followed by Miami Trace senior, Caleb Bennett, who earned second place, and Miami Trace senior Alayna Baughn who earned third place.

In the fall of 2023, Cline plans on attending Ohio State University as a double major in business and architectural design. Cline will also be a part of the Dunn Sport and Wellness Scholar Program during his time at OSU.

“While being in this scholar program,” he said. “I will be doing even more leadership and community service activities to help people in need.”

According to MTHS, the student has already put in outstanding effort in his studies, extracurriculars, and the community.