In true late 90’s, early 00’s movie style, the topic of Homecoming Queen has wreaked havoc on The University of Alabama campus. Last year, there was significant controversy regarding the winning candidate’s alleged multiple election violations and her campaign materials. Reports charged that she exceeded the 12 infraction points needed by a candidate for the Elections Board to deem them disqualified by failing to disclose finances and donations for her election campaign. 

This controversy shed light on the university’s homecoming queen selection process, with students finding much to be desired. In response, university administration and students created a task force designated to re-design the homecoming queen election process. 

This task force has successfully produced new election rules that task force member Trinity Hunter said “clearly define the expectations of a homecoming queen candidate, the parameters of their campaign and the role of the homecoming queen thereafter.” There is first an application and essay portion, followed by candidate interviews. The five highest scoring applicants have been selected for the Homecoming Court, as of October 9th. They will campaign up until election day, which is open to all students on Oct. 18, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Hunter is hopeful about what the existence and output of this task force means for UA students, as it was the voices of the student body that created it. Her hope is that they have “been able to show students that their concerns are being recognized” and that this experience has encouraged students to continue advocating for changes they want to see at The University of Alabama. 

If you’re wondering what all the fuss is about, you’re not alone. The role of Homecoming Queen was previously thought to be a “one and done” situation, according to Homecoming Queen Task Force member Kameron Klass. The honorary was perceived to begin and end on the football field when they were crowned. 

This precedent has firmly shifted in the new era of UA’s Homecoming Queen. Klass identifies the titleholder as “not just a figurehead, but a symbol of volunteerism and leadership. Someone who truly embodies the Capstone Creed.” There is substantially more emphasis on her year of service, highlighting her chosen platform by continuous community service events through the year.

As a campus, an opportunity has opened for this role to be meaningful, substantial and impactful. Controversy creates intrigue. The Homecoming Queen for 2022 has the unique position of having all eyes on her and more interest in the position than there has ever been. 

As with any election, it’s important to make informed, educated decisions and think about the effects of these decisions. It’s up to UA’s campus and community to continue to hold systems accountable, but it’s also students’ responsibility to uplift and support young women of distinction attempting to represent our university.

If you want to hear more about Homecoming, make sure you check out the new Mosaic Mic’d Up episode below!