Our Educational System involves five pillars: Educational Program The Educational program consists of different activities and projects that professionals have written to help you become an effective speaker, a brilliant debater, and a confident leader. They are structured so that you start from very simple things, even if you have zero experience in these fields or are a complete introvert, and slowly but steadily lead you to more and more advanced projects. The best part is that you'll start seeing improvements almost right away. The Educational Program has been created by accomplished and successful professionals with many decades of experience in public speaking, psychology, leadership, story writing, and many other fields. All the materials of the Educational Program are available online, totally free, for all Agora members. Firmly Grounded on Scientific Research. Public speaking (and in general all soft skills training) is, unfortunately, one of those areas where self-help books have propagated many misconceptions and bogus or useless advice, copied and passed on from other books and courses. Here's a test you can do: Pick up any public speaking program that teaches persuasion and check if they include Monroe's Motivated Sequence. They will probably do - and some will even tell you that this is "THE" organizational speech pattern that you need to use every time you need to persuade people. Well, research shows that this particular pattern doesn't have any more persuasive power than any other reasonably organized speech and that, in fact, you can mingle up or completely reverse all the sections of the Motivated Sequence, and the persuasive effect would remain the same. Here's another test: Most public speaking courses will tell you that you should strive to have absolutely no filler words and word parasites in your speech. Well, research actually shows that if your speech is completely devoid of any filler words, you will be perceived as artificial, and your credibility will suffer. One of our Educational Program's core features, and one that we particularly take pride in, is that it is firmly grounded on scientific research. Every advice that you will read, every activity that you will perform, every project that you will deliver is the result of analyzing the scientific literature to make sure that the advice is grounded on studies that prove that it works. Local Clubs Agora Clubs the place where all the fun takes place. They are independent entities that are affiliated with Agora and are created and run locally by volunteers. Clubs hold regular meetings every week, two weeks, or every month, either physically, online, or a mix of the two. Clubs provide a place where Agora members meet, learn, and practice using the educational program - a safe, fun, and supportive environment where you can experiment without fear and hone your skills until you're ready to "fly out of the nest". If there's no Agora club nearby, you can start one yourself. Anyone can start a club. The only things needed are time, energy, and at least 8 members. We provide many support and training materials specifically for club founders, so drop us a note if you're interested. Clubs have a lot of freedom in designing their activities. You will notice that although all the clubs generally follow the same approach and guidelines of the Foundation, they have very different personalities, atmospheres, and feelings. Do you want to get a feeling of how a club meeting looks like? Check any of the recordings on our Youtube channel. Mentors Clubs provide members with a mentorship system that will help you and guide you during your first steps in Agora. Your mentor will help you with your first projects, help you integrate into the club's culture, get involved with all the activities, and guide you with the online systems and tools. Worldwide Community Our diverse worldwide community is an invaluable asset. By all means, engage and participate with it. Attend other clubs, ask questions, ask for advice and feedback. It's priceless to be able to meet people from so many different backgrounds and countries. Periodically we organize regional, national, and international conventions. These are events where you can attend different learning sessions, listen to proficient speakers and even compete in our speech and leadership contests. Additionally, clubs are all the time organizing parties, events, public speaking retreats, marathons, leadership activities, community projects, and all kinds of activities. We pride ourselves on being one big Agora family. You can connect with our community using any of our internal systems, but also on any of our social networks: Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/groups/agoraspeakers Twitter - https://twitter.com/agoraspeakers Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/agoraspeakers/ Youtube - https://www.youtube.com/c/AgoraSpeakers LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/company/agora-speakers Pinterest - https://www.pinterest.com/agoraspeakers/ VKontakte - https://vk.com/agoraspeakers Reddit - https://www.reddit.com/r/AgoraSpeakers/ Telegram Channel - https://t.me/+fUIg9VQOGLZmNTQ0 Online Systems Apart from the Wiki, we're deploying more and more systems designed to help you with all aspects of your experience with Agora. From real-time chat systems, forums, extended courseware materials, webinars, interviews to more sophisticated systems that will help you run your club or even find networking opportunities. We have great plans for this Agora pillar, so stay tuned.