About The Founder STORY BEHIND SPEAK UP

Nayem Alam, one of Canada’s Top 20 Under 20, Governor General, Leadership Award winner, and World Economic Forum’s Global Shaper is best known as a Motivational Spoken Word Poet. He was raised in the neighborhood of Little Burgundy (Montreal, Canada) and is currently studying Electrical Engineering at McGill University.
Nayem was bullied constantly for 4 years regarding his weight, height and image. He had enough and decided to stand up and SPEAK UP for himself. With the help of his english teacher (Maya Doughan) and the English Montreal School Board’s secondary ELA Consultant (Anne Beamish), he successfully established a very unique spoken word competition where all bounds are limitless. 

ORIGINS

  • March 2013

    Preamble

    During a public speaking competition, Nayem was the first person ever to pick up the microphone and walk around with it, when a speech of that nature is normally given behind a podium.

  • June 2013

    An Idea

    Understanding what out-of-the-box thinking and motivational speaking could do, Nayem came up with the idea for a free-flowing speaking competition for young people in his district. As he later reflected, “I wanted to make an event where students from all across my city could feel free to express themselves and love themselves for who they are.” – Elizabeth Di Emanuele
  • Feb 2014

    The Beginning

    The start of “Speak Up Montreal!” competition, which was the first ever slam poetry competition in his school board and is open to every high school on the board. The competition aims to motivate young people to express themselves freely and without judgement. 

  • Feb 2016

    Next Stop

    The start of “Speak Up Vanier,” which was the first ever slam poetry competition at Vanier College which invited participants from all across Montreal above 16 years old.

  • March 2017

    Hustle

    It wasn’t over yet. The year after he proposed to his Speak Up team at Vanier to organize a intercollegiate event. 

    Speak Up!” was established, being the first ever Intercollegiate Slam Poetry Competition in Montreal!

  • TBD

    Expansion

    The goal is to make this a worldwide event. However, we cannot do it by ourselves, so we need YOU. If this type of event interests you, start one in your school or cafe! It’s free and takes only 2-3 months of planning, promoting and executing!

START ONE IN YOUR AREA NOW!

GET IN TOUCH!

We are always trying to improve every part of our event; if you have any feedbacks or comments regarding the event or anything else, let us know!
One of our team members will get back to you within 24-48 hrs!

If, for any chance, the contact form isn’t working, you can always reach us at [email protected] !