Homecoming Queen 2013 Candidates
President of the Chancellor’s Leadership Corp Kelsey Reed of Bryant also serves as vice president of the religious academics society Alpha Xi Rho and is a member of the Trojan Racquetball Club, Young Life and Little Rock Cheer.
An outdoors lover, Reed said her classmates might not realize she “would spend a day on the water or in the woods over roaming around a shopping mall any day of the week.”
“Among the countless super powers to choose from,” Reed said, “avoiding traffic, not paying for gas, circumventing the airport, and an absence of car payments and insurance deductibles make flying by far the most appealing choice.”
When she graduates in spring 2015, Reed said she plans to attend the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences to earn a doctorate in anesthesiology.
In addition to being active in her sorority Alpha Kappa Alpha, Kenesha Barnes of Pine Bluff is an EAST and McNair scholar, and member of the Friday Fellows leadership program and Central Little Rock Promise Neighborhood project.
A brand loyalist, Barnes said her classmates might be surprised to find out she has had five Volkswagen Beetles since she began driving.
If she could travel anywhere in the world, Barnes said “I would go to New York during Fashion Week to buy shoes, because with the right pair of shoes — a girl can change the world.”
After graduating this spring, Barnes plans to continue on her path to changing the world by first furthering her education at the Clinton School of Public Service in a joint degree program with the William H. Bowen School of Law.
A Little Rock native, Dariane Mull is involved in a variety of campus organizations including Support Our Sistahs, Housing Activities Council, Theatre and Dance Guild as well as the Chancellor’s Leadership Corps and Friday Fellows.
Mull said public service is a big part of who she is. “I volunteer through each of my very different organizations, planning community outreach programs, internships through the Central Arkansas Library Systems and Pulaski County Youth Services, as well as at my church,” Mull said. “The roles I play on campus as a leader are all to enrich our campus community and be a mentor to other students and I hope to have done that successfully.”
One day, Mull said, she hopes to become a college professor teaching theater arts and creative writing, but she doesn’t want to stop there. “I also hope to be a published writer of plays and poetry,” she said. “And start my own theatre and company here in Little Rock.”
A fan of English royal history and Jane Austen, Cheyenne Wilson of Cabot was nominated for UALR Homecoming royalty by her sorority Chi Omega.
“I think I’m a perfect example of the opportunities UALR creates for its students,” the Donaghey Scholar said. “If I had gone to a bigger school, I would have been swallowed up and ended up the same introverted, naive person leaving college as when I started. Because of UALR, I have been able to study abroad and travel throughout Europe and England, I have been able to live an exciting life in a great capital city, and I have been able to join and even lead the greatest sorority on earth.”
Wilson said after she graduates in May, she hopes to attend nursing school to pursue a career as a nurse anesthetist.
Fort Smith native, Meredith Rideout serves as vice president of her sorority Chi Omega and is a member of the Theatre and Dance Guild. She said “I love being a student here at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock” and the fact that she devotes so much time and energy into her involvement on campus are what make her a good choice for Homecoming queen.
If she could have one superpower, Rideout said “I would love to fly! Ever since seeing Peter Pan, I think the sensation of flying would be so thrilling.”
After she graduates, Rideout said she wants to continue her education to obtain a doctorate in physical therapy.
Jordan Benedict, 20
Junior health sciences major
Nominated by the Student Athlete Committee
A representative of the Student Athletic Committee that nominated her, Jordan Benedict of Benton is also a member of the UALR Trojan Dance Team and the Chi Omega sorority.
“All of the organizations that I’m involved in on campus embrace a diverse culture within themselves and it’s made my collegiate journey a wonderful learning experience so far, Benedict said. “It’s a huge honor to be able to represent a group of my peers in this manner, and I can imagine that being voted as the queen would be even more of a humbling experience.”
Benedict has a couple things in mind when it comes to a career: either continue in her current line of work as a bank teller, where she said she would like to move up into management, or go on to get a master’s degree in education, so she can eventually teach and coach dance on the secondary school or collegiate level.
Eboni Franklin of Dallas is a member of the University Program Council’s executive committee, an orientation leader for the Office of Campus Life and a student worker in the Department of Information Science.
“I feel that I can relate to and represent every student at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock,” Franklin said. “As an out-of-state transfer student, I have dealt with and overcome many obstacles that the average college student has had to deal with.”
But something her classmates may not know about her is “I love to sing and I’m pretty good at it,” she said. “At least I think so!”
After graduating, Franklin said she plans to pursue a master’s degree, while working as a self employed videographer.
A Little Rock native, Bre’Anna Green is the recording secretary of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, a certified peer educator in the Health Promotions, Programs and Education department and a member of Trojan Talk.
“At a young age,” Green said, “doctors labeled me as having the potential to be permanently disabled, physically and mentally, but look at me now.”
“I have enjoyed the many programs and academic opportunities that our university has to offer and I welcome the opportunity to share these experiences as Homecoming queen,” Green said. “I feel certain in my ability to be a positive representative both on and off campus.”
Green said she aspires to become an international writer/journalist and one day publish a novel.
Britney Taylor of Vilonia is a member of Kappa Delta Sorority and the political science honor society Pi Sigma Alpha.
“In the past 3 years, I have gotten to know many students and professors at UALR,” Taylor said. “I am proud to be a Trojan and am happy to consider UALR my undergraduate institution.”
If she could have one superpower, Taylor said “I would love to have the power to teleport! I am always on the go and if I could cut out drive time, my life would be a lot easier. It would also be super cool.”
After graduating this coming fall, Taylor said she hopes to attend law school and become an attorney, although her dream is to one day open her own bakery.
President of UALR’s Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. Shanice Hood of “Your Dream Hometown” Beebe makes her home away from home in on-campus housing, where she is a resident assistant. She is also member of the Chancellor’s Leadership Corps, Missionary Baptist Student Fellowship, National Pan-Hellenic Council and Health Promotions, Programs and Education department.
If she could go anywhere in the world this spring break, Hood said she would go visit her brother, sister-in-law, two-year-old nephew and recently born niece in Aurora, Colo. “I love my family and they mean the world to me,” she said.
After graduating next year, Hood said she plans to go to graduate school to get a master’s in business administration and hopes to one day own her own business.
Kendra Roy of Brinkley is a member of several religious student organizations including Metro Baptist Collegiate Ministry and Missionary Baptist Student Fellowship, and she has served as a resident assistant in campus housing.
The Homecoming experience is special to Roy who was homeschooled by her mother. “Without my mother’s wisdom in seeking out the best education possible for me, I would not be able to have achieved so much academically during my time at UALR,” Roy said. “However, being homeschooled prevented me from participating during the homecoming events at my hometown’s high school. I have always wanted to be able to be a part of something like that, and now I finally am. I think that is why running means so much to me.”
Roy plans to be a freelance interpreter for the deaf when she graduates. “I also desire to take my skills overseas and help deaf communities to have the same opportunities, rights and awareness that the American deaf community has,” Roy said. “I want them to know just how beautiful and unique their culture is.”
Vice President of the Biology Club Stacy Hicks of Pine Bluff said she hasn’t always been the best student, but those struggles have helped her grow as a person.
As a volunteer at the Little Rock Zoo, Hicks said “I work for the education department doing educational programs for children with animals (like snakes, birds, lizards, and small mammals) to teach them not only about the animals, but about conservation and why it is important. I also help out with a variety of special events at the zoo. It is so much fun!”
Hicks recently applied to UALR’s nursing program in the hopes of becoming a registered nurse. “I love children and would love to work for Children’s Hospital some day,” she said.
Kaylia Houff of Texarkana, Texas is secretary of the Housing Activities Council and serves as parliamentary of Support Our Sistahs.
“I love being involved in community work and helping out with the nursery at my church,” Houff said. “I am a great student and always believe in striving for the best. Keeping a positive attitude and making a difference is what I am about.”
Houff said she expects to graduate with a bachelor’s of social work in May 2015.
Kari Payton of Bastrop, La. is a Donaghey Scholar and a member of the International Council on System Engineering and Student Philanthropy Council. She also plays intramural flag football and basketball with Campus Recreation.
Her classmates might be surprised to learn that in 2009 she was on the Little League Softball World Series Championship team. She said if she had the opportunity to travel anywhere for spring break she would visit Africa, the home of one of her best friends who she met at UALR. “I would love to go visit their family and be immersed in their culture,” she said. “It would be a new experience for me and something I think that is
outside of my comfort zone.”
Payton expects to receive her undergraduate degree in spring 2016, then she plans to go on get her masters and doctorate in engineering.