Meng, Ali named Homecoming king and queen at Jorgensen Center

Homecoming king William Meng and queen Haddiyyah Ali are seen at the Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015. (Allen Lang/The Daily Campus)

The 2015 homecoming king and queen were announced Tuesday night at the Jorgensen Center for the Performing Arts.

Representing the Asian American Cultural Center, William Meng won king and from the African American Cultural Center, Haddiyyah Ali won queen.

The runners up for the title are as follows:

King 

First place runner up – Samuel Julien (Delta Gamma, Zeta Beta Tau, Phi Sigma Rho and Sigma Alpha Mu)

Second place – Tochukwu Njoku (African American Cultural Center)

Third place – Jordan Bellucci (UConn Marching Band)

Fourth place – Quinian Demac (Alpha Delta Phi and Kappa Alpha Theta)

Queen

First place runner up – Prachi Shah (Asian American Cultural Center)

Second place – Kayleigh Fay (UConn Irish)

Third place – Sarah Gelb (UConn Marching Band)

Fourth place – Erin McMahon (Student Alumni Association)

The royalty pageant was broken down into three segments: costume, performance/talent and question and answer. A panel made up of various members of the UConn community judged contestants in each category.

In between segments, representatives of Greek life and cultural fee funded clubs participated in an alma mater singing competition. The overall winner for the competition went to the African American Cultural Center. 

Highlights of the show included Demac bringing out his kitten Samuel in his “Men in Black” inspired costume attire, Bellucci’s dramatic reading of a mash up of Taylor Swift songs and Shah incorporating a group of her dance students - ranging from 11-13 years old - who drove an hour to perform traditional Indian dance with her.

For Meng’s performance, he shared a spoken word poem he wrote himself after hearing about the shooting at an Oregon community college. “There is a killer among all of us and that killer is normal,” he said. Meng also mentioned in his poem that being a Husky means we are able to accept others without judgment because we are all unique and different.

All of the questions in the Q&A portion of the pageant focused on the contestants’ experiences at UConn. They each picked their question randomly out of a bucket and had less than a minute to answer.

Fay was asked, if she could go back in time what UConn experience would she change? Her response was that she would have gotten involved on campus immediately during her freshman year rather than waiting. 

When Njoku was asked what advice he had for freshman students he, like Fay, said to get involved with the campus community as soon as possible.

Bellucci was asked what areas of campus he hopes to see grow and expand over the years. He acknowledged the university’s ongoing plan to promote STEM and loves that they are doing so, but countered that by saying the university “needs to put emphasis on the liberal arts,” which erupted in applause from the audience. 

Sixth semester digital media and design major, Mike Rivera, came out to support his friends participating in the alma mater sing competition. He said the pageant was “overall entertaining.” 


Angie DeRosa is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at angelina.derosa@uconn.edu. She tweets @theangiederosa.