epic speech

Georgia Tech Student Plagiarizes Epic Speech From High School Debate Coach

epic speech
Sean Levinson

A college sophomore’s welcome speech to incoming freshman that is currently hailed as one of the most memorable of all time was apparently partially plagiarized.

Gawker reports that Georgia Tech student Nick Selby stole part of his epic speech from a similar address given by his high school debate coach Andy Stone in 2008.

Stone’s speech is available on YouTube.

It was from Stone that Selby got the idea to use theme music from “2001: A Space Odyssey” to extenuate the climax of the speech. Selby also borrowed some of his former debate coach’s phrases, even though the two speeches were about two entirely different things.

“If you want to play theme music during your [speech], that’s allowed! I can do that! I am doing that!” Stone shouts during his 2008 speech, which aimed to get high school students to “rescue” the science fiction genre.

And this is what Selby said in his speech:

“If you want to play theme music during your convocation speech like a badass, you can do that! You’re at Georgia Tech! I am doing that!”

According to Daily Mail, Selby claims he asked Stone for his permission to lift those phrases.

Selby was a member of the Speech, Theater and Debate Company at Desert Vista High School. Stone was assistant coach of the club in 2006.

The rest of Selby’s speech, however, seems to be completely uninfluenced and self-made.

He urged his freshman audience “to do the impossible” and “crush the shoulders of the giants upon whom we stand.”

“Our mission as students is NOT to follow in the footsteps of the astronauts, Nobel Prize Laureates, and president who graduated before us, but to EXCEED their footsteps,” said the mechanical engineering student.

The YouTube video of the address has already garnered over one million views just a few days after it was posted by user Andy Blanton.

“If you want to change the world, you’re at Georgia Tech, you can do that! If you want to build the Iron Man suit, you’re at Georgia Tech—you can do that! If you want to play theme music during your convocation speech like a badass, we’re at Georgia Tech—we can do that,” he screamed.

The motivated yet probably confused freshman gave him a respectful ovation.

“Congratulations,” he said before walking off stage. “Brace yourselves for a hell of a ride on your way to becoming a hell of an engineer.”

Via: Daily Mail, Photo Courtesy: YouTube

Sean Levinson

Sean Levinson

Staff Writer

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