UALR 2014 homecoming queen has eyes set on travel abroad, med school

Senior Sharhonda Kelly was so surprised at being named UALR’s 2014 Homecoming Queen that she almost left her father and escort, Tarazzo Kelly, standing at center court.

“I was shocked,” Kelly said, with a smile. “I was a big tomboy in high school, but I decided I was ready to try something different.”Sharhonda

Kelly, 23, of De Queen, a small town in southwest Arkansas, was crowned during halftime of the Trojan’s men’s basketball game in Jack Stephens Center on Saturday, March 8.

For the past two and a half years, she has served as a student worker in the Student Health Services office. The Trojan Talk, an affiliate program of health services that works to promote healthy lifestyle choices, sponsored Kelly during her candidacy for homecoming queen.

A biology major and Spanish minor, Kelly has her eyes set on medical school following graduation and may specialize in family medicine. But before she takes the MCAT and begins the process of applying to a range of medical schools, she plans to study Spanish this summer at a UALR-affiliated university based in Salamanca, Spain.

In addition to being a Ronald E. McNair Scholar and University Science Scholar, Kelly also serves as a peer educator for HPPE (Health Promotion, Programs and Education), an extension of health services.

Kelly is the first African-American student to graduate as valedictorian from De Queen High School.

“Since being crowned queen, I will do my absolute best to represent UALR well, both on and off campus,” Kelly said.

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