Upset caps off 2018-19 SGA elections

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A surprising Miss N.C. Central University result rocked the top floor of the Alfonso Elder Student Union tonight as Faith Thomas-Lewis secured her place in history to become the 76th Miss NCCU alongside the 19th Mr. NCCU, Jamaal Searcy.

The vast majority of winners were expected — especially for senatorial positions, where fewer than five people ran for the five open slots in each class — and those gathered in the union cheered on their friends and favorite candidates as the result announcements whittled down to the race between Faith Thomas-Lewis and Shanaya Belvin for the top women’s prize of the evening.

At the Mr. and Miss Pageant the night before, Belvin had swept the individual awards categories, taking home certificates for Best Interview, Best Oratory, Best Talent and Best Stage Question Response. With that in mind, it seemed almost guaranteed that the former Miss Freshman and Sophomore would add another crown to her collection.

But Thomas-Lewis, a social work junior from right here in Durham, had the hearts of the student body.

Belvin’s narrow victories for the interview and talent categories did not create a wide enough berth to make up for the 26.4-point difference between Belvin and Thomas-Lewis’ popular vote scores.

The student vote, which counted for only 30 percent of the overall score in determining this year’s Mr. and Miss, placed Thomas-Lewis ahead of her opponent by 150, earning 914 of NCCU students’ votes to Belvin’s 764.

Searcy, on the other hand, ran unopposed for the highest male court position.

The former Mr. Sophomore, current Mr. Junior and mass communication student from Walnut Cove, N.C. still competed in the pageant to gauge his skills at representing NCCU on the national pageant stage. His combined interview, oratorical, talent and stage question response earned him a total of 608.8 points.

The major SGA and other Royal Court results are as follows:

  • Student Body Vice President: Brandon Hedgebeth, rising senior (52.7%, 904 out of 1715 total student body votes)
  • Student Body President: Davanta Parker, rising senior (unopposed)
  • Mr. Sophomore: Nijel Hawley-Newkirk (50.7%, 332 out of 655 freshman votes)
  • Miss Sophomore: Joi Edwards (42.9%, 281 votes)
  • Sophomore Class Vice President: Savoya Joyner (unopposed)
  • Sophomore Class President: Giera Mann (56.5%, 370 votes)
  • Mr. Junior: Christian Allison (59.2%, 287 out of 485 sophomore votes)
  • Miss Junior: Lyric Tillman (84.3%, 409 votes)
  • Junior Class Vice President: Jacorey Bellamy (unopposed)
  • Junior Class President: Ahamad Moseley (unopposed)
  • Mr. Senior: Kelvin Techie (44%, 166 out of 377 junior votes)
  • Miss Senior: Starbesha Satterwhite (43.8%, 165 votes)
  • Senior Class Vice President: Deshanae Meaders (unopposed)
  • Senior Class President: Anneliese Samples (unopposed)

Overall voter participation dropped only 1.2% between the 2017–18 and 2018–19 election cycles. Online voting began on March 27 at 10 p.m. and closed today at 5 p.m.

All 2018–19 officers, including those on the NCCU Royal Court, will take the SGA oath of office. Formal coronation for NCCU Royal Court members takes place during Homecoming festivities in the fall semester.

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