Florida A&M University kicked off homecoming week with the 26th Annual Housing Step Show in the Al Lawson Center on Oct. 1.
The show consisted of teams made up of residents from each FAMU dormitory: Village Boys as V-Nasty, The Truth and Paddyfote Steppers (TPS), Gibbs Hall as G-Phi, Village Girls Steppers (VGS), Impact for the Palmetto Apartments, and InSYNc for Sampson and Young Hall.
During the show, there were guest performances from alumni housing step show participants as well as local step teams. Attendants of the event were visibly thrilled by the performances.
Health management major Kenya Jones was excited to attend the step show being that this is her first year participating in homecoming activities as a student.
“It was really fun and I think this is a great way to start off homecoming,” Jones exclaimed. “The event started out slow, but as more teams came out the energy picked up.”
TPS came out victorious at this year's competition. Despite initial struggles with consistency, the team still pulled through to the top, managing to make this their first win since 2015.
Health management major and TPS member Amber Smith was overwhelmed with joy when she found out her team had won.
“The process was really hard but I made so many friends, and stepping with them really made me happy,” Smith said.
The road to the actual show performance is extremely long and tough. Teams have just a few weeks to practice and make sure everything comes out perfect. Through the long nights of practice and sore muscles, each member puts their all into making the effort count.
TPS Step Master and Business Administration student, Imani Wilson believed that all the work was truly worth it.
“It was overwhelming at some points. A lot of ups and downs, but I’m glad that they really pushed through and came together the last couple of weeks,” Wilson explained. “I knew their potential and I wanted to push them the same way I was pushed. I couldn’t be more proud of them.”
For the second year, there was the presentation of the Apex of Excellence Inaugural Award. The award was granted to someone who has dedicated countless hours and immeasurable amounts of energy to the housing step show. This year’s recipient was Kaitlin Haynes.
Haynes started her journey at the Housing Step Show as a step team member then worked her way to step master. After fulfilling the role of step master, she served as the secretary on the executive board and now currently serves as the co-chair alongside a Agribusiness student, Rochard Moricette.
Upon granting Haynes the award, Moricette reflected on her contributions to the show.
“Without Kaitlin, the show simply would not have happened,” Moricette stated. “She has been the backbone of this show.”
The addition of the Apex of Excellence Award was not the only change made this year. Typically there is a “Housing Cup” award that is granted to the team who displays the most spirit throughout the time leading up to the competition. However, due to a lack of time, they were unable to grant the award this year.