Hoping to teach young Rattler women proper etiquette, the Office of Student Union Activities hosted a tea party in The Grand Ballroom Sunday.
“The ability to communicate is what sets you aside from everyone else,” keynote speaker Myoushi Jones said. Jones, wife of former Senator Darrell Jones, was unable to attend the event due to traffic constraints but was available for comment.
Jones titles her speech with the acronym IMAGE. “Seventy-five percent of the key to success is your IMAGE,” Jones said.
I represents impression, M represents mature, A represents attitude, G represents greetings, and E represents encouraging. Jones usually closes out her presentation by teaching young ladies proper etiquette.
With crowns on their heads, gloves covering their hands and beautiful dresses, the girls of FAMU came prepared to leave as ladies.
Saundra Inge, associate director of student activities, said the etiquette formal was aimed toward assisting young females with the transition from being a girl to becoming a lady.
“When I was in college in 1962, a tea was mandatory,” Inge said. “(They taught us) how to wait for the chair to be pulled out and putting your napkin in your lap. (Also) what kind of conversation to have and at what volume level.”
Inge went on to further explain that tea parties taught her proper etiquette and enlightened her on how a lady should present herself.
“I thought it was the most dreadful thing in the world when I was doing it, and now I think it was probably the most wonderful thing because there is no place that I go where I don’t know what is proper to do.”
With the media having a major influence on how the younger generation carries itself, there has been a general consensus that women today fail to respect themselves.
Fatimat Idris, 24, a pharmacy student from Tampa feels that women have no respect for themselves.
“Unfortunately, television has portrayed women in a lot of negative ways, and women think that’s ok, and it’s really not,” said Idris, student coordinator of the tea party. “We have forgotten how to act as women, to be proud of being a woman, and how to act beautiful.”
Even though the event was geared toward women, men were in attendance to learn how to treat the opposite sex.
Keeyon Upkins, 20, a business administration student from Jackson, Miss., said there is a lack of maturity among women today.
“A lot of times women will not respect themselves enough by wearing the short skirts and even by the way they speak by calling themselves the B word,” Upkins said.
Upkins went on to say women should be treated like queens, but there are those women whose actions prevent them from receiving that kind of honor.
“There is no excuse for men disrespecting women,” he said.
“But if you don’t respect yourself enough to cover up when you go out, or not curse, drink or smoke in public, then how can you expect someone else to respect you.”
Inge calls the women today microwave kids because they like everything quick and fast and nothing is special to them.
“I don’t notice girls liking to be girls. I don’t notice them allowing a young man to be a gentlemen,” Inge said.
“A lot of the young men I talk to say that there are very few (women) that they would choose from because they don’t want to take them (the other females) to their mothers.”
Inge said she wants to let young ladies know they don’t have to show it all and should leave some things to the imagination. Inge said her definition of a woman is one that is seen and not heard because image is everything. “They’re seen and noticed by the way that they carry themselves,” she said.
With the belief that women are the backbone of society, Idris hopes that her female counterparts will step up and become the true ladies that they were created to be.