Candidates show off, students show support

On Feb. 22 the top and bottom levels of Lee Hall auditorium were filled to capacity as students, alumni and family members gathered in support of the 2007-2008 royal court candidates in this year’s spring elections.

The pageant included the introductions, platform presentations, biographical history and talent presentations of the candidates vying for the positions of sophomore, junior and senior class attendant, king and queen of orange and green and Mr. and Miss Florida A&M University.

“The purpose of the pageant is to allow the students to get to know the candidates more,” said Kimberly Kirby, coordinator for the 2007-2008 Mr. & Miss FAMU Pageant. “The pageant showcases their talents and other assets.”

During the business and formal presentations the candidates modeled as the masters and mistresses of ceremonies, Lynsey Gwyn, Shane Jordan, Erin Johnson and Jarred C. Morgan read their platforms and backgrounds to a crowd of screaming audience members.

The majority of the crowd rose to its feet as the candidates for king and queen of orange and green showcased their FAMU pride during the traditional spirit presentation.

The pageant also included the final walk of the current members of the FAMU Royal Court.

During the talent portion candidates for Mr. and Miss FAMU displayed a variety of talents including dance, drill routines, singing and acting.

“It was an excellent production, better than I anticipated,” said Kirby, who said the candidates only had a week of preparation.

Kirby said the pageant serves multiple purposes in that it allows the candidate’s peers to get to know them on a more personal level and allows the candidates to get to know one another while developing relationships and promoting healthy competition.

“The candidates come together to help each other (during rehearsals) and usually become longtime friends contrary to outside belief,” said Kirby.

Some students said they enjoyed the overall pageant because it gave them a better understanding of candidates and helped them decided on a candidate to support.

“In retrospect, I think the pageant is an excellent way for the student body to get an up close and personal perspective of the candidates and what they stand for,” said Clifton N. Addie a junior political science student from Miami.

Addie said, “Hopefully all the people will practice what they preached tonight and really make a difference.”

Jeremy C. Caldwell, a junior electronic engineering student from Chicago, said he believes that watching the candidates in action during the pageant is more helpful than reading campaign materials and looking at billboards.

“They gave us a lot of information, but it’s not always what they say it’s the way they say it.”

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