Miss University Pageant Set for Wednesday

Contest to feature 11 UM students at the Ford Center

From top, left to right: Alley Daily, Anna Beth Higginbotham and Cheney Thomasson

OXFORD, Miss. – Eleven University of Mississippi students are set to vie for the title of Miss University 2014 next week at the annual Miss University pageant.

Set for 7:30 p.m. Wednesday (Nov. 20) at the Gertrude C. Ford Center for Performing Arts, the pageant is hosted by the Student Activities Association and the Ole Miss Student Union. Tickets, available at the UM Box Office, are $10 for Ole Miss students (must show ID) and $15 for the general public.

The winner advances to the Miss Mississippi Scholarship Pageant, set for July in Vicksburg.

The pageant will be emceed by Caroline Conerly, reigning Miss University, and Chelsea Rick, Miss Mississippi 2013. Entertainment for the pageant will feature students from Oxford Ballet School as well as both Conerly and Rick. In addition to performing her talent from Miss America, Rick will speak about her reign as Miss Mississippi and her experience preparing for Miss America.

From top, left to right: Destiny Denton, Elyssa Howell, Emma Johnson and Mary Frances Stephens

The judge’s criteria are as follows: All contestants participate in a private interview with a panel of five judges the day of the pageant. The interview counts as 25 percent. That evening, each contestant will take part in the talent competition, worth 35 percent, and lifestyle and fitness in swimwear, worth 15 percent. Contestants will also take part in the evening wear competition, worth 20 percent, and an on-stage interview, worth 5 percent. Judges will score each contestant on a scale of 1-to-10 in each phase of competition.

The contestants participating in this year’s pageant are Taylor Cos of Hoover, Ala.; Alley Daily of Hot Springs, Ark.; Destiny Denton of Memphis, Tenn.; Anna Beth Higginbotham of Hattiesburg; Elyssa Howell of Germantown, Tenn.; Emma Johnson of Chattanooga, Tenn.; Taylor-Alice Mays of Arab, Ala.; Mary Frances Stephens of Magee; Cheney Thomasson of Newnan, Ga.; Shaniqua Wesley of Water Valley; and Rachel Westmoreland of Kennesaw, Ga.

From top, left to right: Rachel Westmoreland, Shaniqua Wesley, Taylor Alice Mays and Taylor Cos

For more information, contact Bradley Baker, director of the Ole Miss Student Union, at 662-915-1044 or tbbaker@olemiss.edu.