Story by Breanna Sill, Staff writer
This time last year, Rachel Ross, a mermaid-loving sophomore from Murray, and Kendrick Settler, a soccer and theater loving sophomore from Belleville, Illinois, had no idea they would soon be crowned homecoming queen and king for the 2014-15 school year. Now, both juniors, they are about to hand down their crowns to their successors at homecoming on Oct. 10.
Ross and Settler shared some insight from their year as homecoming king and queen and gave advice for other students on what qualities to look for when voting for the candidates in this year’s ceremony.
Breanna Sill: Why do you think it’s important for people to vote?
Kendrick Settler: I think people should vote because you are choosing people to represent Murray State University, you know, the place that you’re going to school. I don’t see why you wouldn’t want to vote to support a fellow student.
Rachel Ross: I agree, I think everybody who participates in homecoming events should vote. Because if homecoming means something to you, I know probably, at the end of the day, you’re going to watch to see who’s crowned, and if you care about those things you should probably vote. It’s free and that’s such a great perk- you get to have your opinion heard.
BS: What is your favorite thing you’ve done so far as king and queen?
KS: I think my favorite thing was the basketball game. We did this thing where we were tied together with this bungee cord and we had to see who could make the most baskets before the game. I lost, but oh well.
RR: I adore parades, but I’m from Murray so when I came to school here I don’t think I was that appreciative of the fact that I get to share my college town with my hometown. But, even being on homecoming court and being in that parade and seeing so many familiar faces that knew me through my childhood – that was one of the most fulfilling moments through the whole experience.
BS: What are your responsibilities are king and queen?
KS: I think our biggest responsibility is being a positive role model for the students at Murray State. We kind of show them how to be a positive role model in every aspect – academic and outside of the classroom.
RR: I completely agree, and I would also say that Kendrick and I are in an interesting spot because I feel like past king and queens have not typically been still in school. So, I feel a big responsibility is being kind of a presence on campus and stepping up to do as much as you can for the university you represent.
BS: What is something not a lot of people know about you?
RR: My friends know this, but you probably wouldn’t know this if you didn’t know me, but I’m obsessed with mermaids. It’s kind of a quirk of mine. Basically my whole bathroom is mermaids and if there is a mermaid trinket or something, I latch onto it.
KS: I played sports my whole life. Halfway through my career in high school I started acting and I liked to do theater and stuff like that. I don’t think anyone really knows that about me.
BS: What is something you wish you had the power to do as homecoming king and queen?
KS: I wish we could plan a campus wide event, I would love to plan something for the students who voted for us. We helped the freshmen out this year with the Gold Rush, but I would like to be able to do something with the people who voted and connect with those people through the University.
RR: I think what I wish we could do is do more with community outreach. I think that since I am from Murray, I was one of those little girls that watched homecoming kings and queens get crowned or whoever it may be in the spotlight. When you move to Murray it is a small town so we thrive off of community support. So, I think that being able to do a campaign about bullying, or something hands on. You have more power for kids when you have a crown on or Kendrick just being a cool dude talking to kids. I would’ve loved that.
BS: What should people look for this year when they are voting for king and queen?
KS: I think they should look for someone who will represent the university in a good way. They will do certain things for the university and they will be a positive role model.
RR: I think, when I vote, I am going to vote for someone who I think is really just genuinely happy to be on court. I don’t think campaigning is wrong at all, but I think I really appreciate students who just step out of their comfort zone and recruit different people to vote for them, not just their friends.