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Sara York is crowned Miss UCF 2010

  • About 700 students attended “A Knight of Fame,” the 2010 Miss UCF Scholarship Pageant, presented by the Campus Activities Board on Saturday night in the Pegasus Ballroom of the Student Union.
  • Sixteen out of 35 women who auditioned sang, danced and tumbled their way into the competition. Contestants were required to be full-time students, have at least a 2.5 GPA and have a talent that can be performed onstage.
  • Contestants were red-carpet ready as they were judged on private interviews, lifestyle and fitness in swimsuits, talent, evening wear and a final onstage question.

Pageant selection process

“It is our mission tonight to find the ideal UCF Knight,” said Dasha González, Miss UCF 2009 and a senior molecular biology and microbiology major. “She should be dedicated to our community and its betterment, talented and able to entertain, articulate and ready to represent her university with pose and pride.”

Except for a few of the women, most had never competed in pageants.

“A lot of the times the girls come in [to auditions] not really knowing how serious the pageant is,” said Samantha Nemeroff, a senior event management major and Spectacular Knight and Campus Activities Board Director. “Unlike Mr. UCF, she could go on to Miss Florida with the chance of becoming Miss America.”

Talent, talent everywhere

The pageant kicked off as contestants danced a choreographed number to “Fame” as González took center stage in a glittery sequin dress.

While many of the women chose to serenade judges and audience members during the talent portion of the competition, others took a different approach.

Alejandra Kato spiced things up with a flamenco dance before Nicole Salce, the best interview winner, donned a fuzzy pink bathrobe and slippers for her “Guys and Dolls” performance. Natalia Vighetto, a former competitive gymnast, was the non-finalist talent winner with her acrobatics-infused dance routine.

“It’s not just a talent show. It’s not just ‘Hey look at me, I’m pretty’—it’s about your integrity and really representing your school,” Nemeroff said.

The dreaded question

During the onstage interview segment of the pageant, contestants were given a chance to positively push their platforms. Sara York, the newly-crowned Miss UCF and a senior event management major, wants to work with non profit organizations after graduation.

“Crafting a vision, creating a future, for me, is all about promoting self confidence in today’s youth,” York said about her platform. She goes to local youth organizations making vision boards to help children materialize their hopes and dreams, she said.

And the winner is…

As González prepared to pass on the title and the crown to her best friend, she said, “Holy guacamole! It’s been a year already.” She had the opportunity to let the community know “who and what UCF stands for.”

York also took home the audience favorite award after Knight-Thon’s fundraiser for Children’s Miracle Network determined the winner. Audience donations totaled more than $1600.

Kelly Cox, Jacqueline Boehme and Lauren Murphy were awarded first, second and third runners-up, respectively. All finalists win scholarship money, free textbooks for a year and a class ring.

For more information on UCF pageantry:

UCF alumna competes in Miss America Pageant

UCF student is crowned Miss Orlando

Mr. UCF 2010 selected in terror-themed pageant

Follow me on Twitter!

  • As my visual/multimedia component, I would include a picture slideshow with photos highlighting the night. I would include photos of the winner and from each part of the pageant, especially the evening gown and talent portions. Including photos is a better choice than audio since I think that many viewers watch pageants purely for the clothes and talent segment. Also, the winner did not give any kind of celebratory speech once she was crowned.

Experience reflection of using Twitter

Tweeting coverage during an event was a little harder than I anticipated. It wasn’t difficult to Tweet; it was difficult to multitask, which is so vital for journalists now. The event ended at 10 p.m. and I was expected to turn in my story to the Future as soon as possible.  So, I found myself trying to keep up with my Tweets while writing my story at the same time and keeping my eyes and ears open.

For people using Twitter who have a large following, I can see the advantages for journalists to use it. Not only does it help your readers connect with you, they also get the news as it’s breaking. I was able to Tweet who won the pageant moments after it was announced.

One of the main disadvantages for me was that I felt like a distraction to the audience members around me. I let the pageant director know ahead of time that I would be Tweeting during the event, but I’m sure everyone else thought I was texting friends. I was also sitting in the front row, so besides scribbling notes furiously, I was  essentially texting my Tweets, which lit up my phone’s screen in the darkened room.

Another difficulty I had was trying to include quotes in my Tweets. I couldn’t fit the majority of the quotes I liked since I would have to include the attribution. If I just included someone’s name with a quote, most people wouldn’t know who that person is or why they are relevant. But with only 140 characters allowed, I couldn’t fit any background descriptions.

It was a challenging but fun experience, and hopefully I’ll become better at multitasking one of these days.

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