Continuing a yearly tradition, the 16th annual Miss Oakwood Pageant was held at Huntsville’s Trinity United Methodist Church on January 19, 2009. The impressive event, planned by the Office of Student Activities, featured six young ladies competing to become the next Miss Oakwood University. The six contestants were Mishay Butler, junior English major and communication arts minor from Moreno Valley, CA; Holly Carrell, senior biochemistry major from St. Louis, MO; Kendall Coopwood, senior biochemistry major from Atlanta, GA; Christine Jobson, senior music education major from Miami, FL; Alyssa Minisee, senior elementary education major from Los Angeles, CA; and Khyrista Valentine, junior biology major from Kansas City, MO.
Following an invocation by Mrs. Patricia Stewart Daniel, Oakwood University vice president of student services, the ceremony commenced with a praise dance by all six contestants, set to the tune of Donald Lawrence’s “Seasons” and performed by master and mistress of ceremonies, Victor Acquah and Jill Lawrence. The opening feature was appropriately chosen to emphasize the program theme, “A Woman for Every Season.”
The young women prepared for the pageant through etiquette seminars, community service activities, and other training beginning in October 2008. Each contestant performed an introductory monologue for the Creative Business segment of the program, and each contestant demonstrated a unique ability for the Talent segment. The Evening Gown segment allowed each participant to wear a gown that she had chosen to best display her personality and style.
Each of the three finalists was given a different question to answer extemporaneously in the Question and Answer segment. After votes from the judges were tabulated and Miss Oakwood 2008 and Miss Oakwood 2007 (Danielle LaTouche and Nicole Julius, respectively) had taken their final walks, Christine Jobson was named Miss Oakwood University 2009. The first runner-up was Kendall Coopwood; second runner-up was Holly Carrell. “I was just so excited and overwhelmed with emotion,” said Ms. Jobson about her reaction to hearing her name called as Miss Oakwood. She hopes this year to increase school spirit among students and place special emphasis on the young women of campus among other goals. Ms. Jobson was crowned and took her first walk as Miss Oakwood 2009 on the eve of the Inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States of America. Jobson, who plans to begin graduate studies in vocal performance and pedagogy after her graduation in May, will be featured along with campus queens from other historically Black colleges and universities in an upcoming issue of Ebony magazine.
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