Record number of OCU contestants sent to Miss Oklahoma Pageant

Sonya Barrett, Miss Keystone Lake

Sarah Jensen, Miss Grand Lake

Michelle Luneau, Miss OCU

OCU will have 10 students in the Miss Oklahoma Pageant this week, a record number of representatives for the school that has been fondly dubbed “Miss America U” for its tradition of success in pageants. The pageant is June 8 – 12 in Tulsa.

All but one of the OCU contestants in this year’s state pageant participated in the university’s contest in February, with Heather Harris returning as the 2009 winner to crown her successor. Sheridan Fulkerson, Miss South OKC, already had a title to qualify her for the Miss Oklahoma Pageant.

Contestants from OCU have a varying range of experience.

Sonya Barrett, Miss Keystone Lake and first-time regional title holder, is competing for the first time in the Miss Oklahoma Pageant.

Barrett said she encourages women aspiring to hold a regional title to be themselves.

“There’s no use in trying to be someone you’re not,” she said. “The crowd and the judges will adore you if you’re comfortable with yourself and who you are.”

Sarah Jensen, Miss Grand Lake, has held a regional title for three consecutive years.

The mass communications senior said winning the pageant would be a “dream come true.”

“I have always felt that I have a special message to extend to the youth of the state of Oklahoma,” she said. “It would be an honor to be an ambassador for the state that has made me the person I am today. I love Oklahoma and would love to give back to the people of this state.”

Darwina Marshall, executive director and president of the Miss OCU Pageant, said she is proud to accompany such a large group of contenders.
“We’re excited to show the rest of the state why we have such a strong reputation of having the most gifted and hard-working students,” Marshall said. “These young women have been preparing for this contest for many years, and I think each has an excellent chance to win.”
OCU will provide scholarships to all contestants in the Miss Oklahoma Pageant and the Miss Oklahoma’s Outstanding Teen contest. The scholarships are valued at nearly $205,000 for the Miss Oklahoma Pageant contestants and more than $231,000 for the outstanding teen contestants. The winner of the Miss Oklahoma’s Outstanding Teen contest will be offered full tuition for eight semesters and Miss Oklahoma will be offered half tuition for eight semesters.
The university has contributed more than $2.2 million in educational scholarships to more than 340 pageant contestants over the past 54 years.
There have been 24 Miss Oklahoma winners and three Miss Americas — Jane Jayroe, Susan Powell and Shawntel Smithfrom OCU. Kelsey Cartwright in 2008 was the latest to win the state contest.
The university also is sending Miss OCU Teen Madison Pride to compete in the Miss Oklahoma’s Outstanding Teen contest next weekend. Georgia Frazier, Miss OCU Teen 2008, won the 2009 Miss Oklahoma Outstanding Teen Pageant.
The contestants are as follows:
Michelle Luneau, Miss OCU
Platform — Seeing It All: Healthy Eyes for Healthy Futures
Talent – Character tap dance to “I Want to be a Rockette”
Sheridan Fulkerson, Miss South OKC
Platform — ICE (In Case of Emergency – When Seconds Count)
Talent — Lyrical dance to “My Heart Will Go On”
Hailey Holloway, Miss Sooner State
Platform — Volunteer for Life
Talent — Piano, playing “Trantella”
Jennifer Hancock, Miss Green Country
Platform— Intellectual disabilities awareness
Talent— Ballet en pointe to “Lullaby”
Brittany Bisel, Miss Riverwalk
Platform — Appreciation of the Elderly
Talent — Vocal, singing “Bridge Over Troubled Water”
Kelsey Guard, Miss Queen of the West
Platform — Educate, Advocate, Change in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease
Talent — Vocal, singing “Les Oiseaux dans la Charmille”
Heather Harris, Miss Okmulgee County
Platform — Bullying prevention and intervention
Talent — Vocal, singing “Love is Where You Find It”
Amanda Kay Richey, Miss Lawton
Platform — The Magic in Believing
Talent — Vocal, singing “What I Did for Love”
Sarah Jensen, Miss Grand Lake
Platform — Be the Best YOU!, encouraging healthy habits among youth
Talent — Tap dance to “Dibidy Dap”
Sonya Barrett, Miss Keystone Lake
Platform — Going Green Today for a Brighter Tomorrow
Talent — Vocal/guitar, playing “At Last”
Madison Pride, Miss OCU Teen
Platform – H.O. T. Lunch – Healthy Options Today for Lunch

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