Here on “The Hill,” the spring 2022 election season quickly came and left. Unfortunately for Nya Cummings, this meant her reign did as well.
Cummings, the former Miss Junior Attendant for the 2021-2022 academic school year, successfully completed her reign this month and took some time out to reflect on her experience serving on Florida A&M University’s Royal Court.
“Reigning as Miss Junior Attendant was one of the best experiences yet,” Cummings said. “I taped into a new and improved version of myself while aiming to push the student body past being more than just a name, a greeting and a label, and toward passion and purpose.”
Cummings always knew that she wanted to get involved on campus and eventually step into a leadership position, but it was not until she got to know her classmates, further got to know herself and joined other organizations that she decided to set her mind toward the goal of running for Miss Junior Attendant.
This would not be Cummings’ first experience holding a leadership position. She had previously won the miss junior position in high school. However, Cummings knew that reigning at an HBCU came with higher expectations, more responsibility and a larger audience. Cummings said it wasn’t always easy to manage this position alongside her other responsibilities, such as the organizations she was involved in, her classes and work-study, but she found a way.
“Time management and procrastination can kill the success of any successful being, so it was very important to sway away from distractions and laziness,” Cummings said. “Phone calendars, physical calendars, reminders and sticky notes have become my best friends this past year.”
Cummings said that her reign was one that she found to enjoy in more ways than a few. Throughout her experience, Cummings was able to establish relationships that she valued, and this was the most fulfilling part of her experience, she said.
“I enjoyed the action of reigning altogether, the opportunities, the friends and the platform, but the connections formulated is what I am most appreciative for,” Cummings said. “I gained brothers, sisters, close friends, mentees and mentors I will carry with me throughout my lifetime.”
Reigning was not as perfect as it may seem to have been. In holding a leadership position as prominent as Cummings’. Obstacles often present themselves. Through trial and error, Cummings was able to learn just how to handle every barrier that got in her way.
“I allowed myself to feel the sad and difficult moments, but I never lived in them too long,” Cummings said. “I knew anything I went through was only going to make me stronger or prepare me for something much greater. Any time things did not go as I planned, I had to trust God’s outline and design for my life.”
Jonathan Niblack, a third-year mechanical engineering student, was able to attest to Cummings’ ability to persevere as he served alongside her on the Royal Court as her escort.
“She served amazingly throughout her term and was able to show that work is able to get done throughout all adversity,” Niblack said. “She went through so much while being on the court and fulfilled her duties just as strongly as she started.”
Despite everything that she went through, Cummings is still grateful for her experience serving on the Royal Court. Cummings shared that this position allowed her to accomplish what she had always planned to.
“Being Miss Junior simply provided me the platform to do the things I had always aspired to do here on campus,” Cummings said. “The crown was always just an accessory representing my commitment to FAMU, which will never fade or diminish.”
As her reign concludes, Cummings plans to remain a campus leader and finish accomplishing the many goals that she set for herself. She hopes to deepen her connections and expand her target area from FAMU students to the young and urban Tallahassee community.
Cummings shares a great relationship with the newly elected Miss Junior, Skylar Warren, and was happy to hear that her mentee and Faces Modeling Troupe sister had won the position of Miss Junior Attendant. Warren shared that Cummings was like a big sister to her and was someone who had been there for her before and after the crown. Warren said that Cummings served as a queen should and taught her many things that she plans to utilize throughout her reign.
“Nya set the standard of what a queen should do after the crown,” Warren said. “To carry yourself to the highest standard, upholding the meaning of the word ‘queen’ through actions and not words, and do so with confidence, humility and class.”
Cummings said that she is proud of Warren and all that she has accomplished and shared one last piece of advice for her.
“The journey will not always be easy but remember your purpose and the passion you entered into the position with,” Cummings said. “Keep that in your back pocket, that will be your best friend.”
On March 18, Cummings was named Miss Junior of the Year by @hbcumisterandmiss on Instagram.