South Australia


Nina Phillips has won the national   Japanese Language Speech Contest with a topic on ‘cuteness’.

Nina has been studying Year 12 Continuers level Japanese after-hours with School of Languages in 2015. Nina won the Background Speaker Division at the state level contest in September, which was hosted by the Japanese Teachers’ Association of South Australia.

National finals were held in Sydney on Saturday 10 October. Nina took out the grand prize of a travel package to Japan courtesy of the Japan Foundation.

“I chose to speak about the concept of ‘kawaii’ or ‘cuteness’ in Japanese popular culture as we are seeing more and more evidence of it in Australia, such as in the Hello Kitty craze”, explained Nina.

My Japanese teacher really encouraged me to apply. I enjoy studying at School of Languages because it brings together students from schools all over Adelaide who have the same passion for languages”.

Nina hopes to go on to a career in journalism where she feels a second language will be of great benefit. She’s even hoping to start another language soon. Nina plans to use her prize and travel to Japan this December with her very proud mother, who is Japanese.

Photo courtesy Ms Chizuru Lock

Nina is presented with her certificate as winner of the state level division in September, by Japan Foundation representative, Ms Junko Yano, coordinator of the contest.