Kristin Morris began her Friday as just another student. By that night, the communication studies senior was the newly crowned Miss Texas State.
The winner of the Miss Texas State Beauty Pageant will compete in the United Nations Pageant at the Ritz Carlton Golf Resort and Spa Montego Bay this summer. The opportunity left Morris speechless.
“I’m so excited,” Morris said. “I am honored to be Miss Texas State to represent the university as well as the state in the Miss United Nations Pageant.”
Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity members continued the tradition of hosting Miss Texas State to benefit the national charity, Books for Kids. Remaining funds provided the top three winners with scholarships.
The contestants were judged in five categories — panel interview, fitness/swimwear, evening wear, photogenic and on-stage impromptu questions.
“The pageant began in the 1990s with our alumnus,” said Chris Steger, management senior. “It’s been four months and to finally see the finished product is a big achievement.”
The pageant, held at the Cotton Gin, was Steger’s last as president of Sigma Tau Gamma before his May graduation.
“My frat brothers helped me, but I was in charge of screening the judges, recruiting the women and setting the location for the pageant,” Steger said.
Ashley Willis, communication studies junior, said she felt privileged to have worked with Steger as a contestant in the pageant.
“He puts in a lot of work and hours for this event, and it was a huge success,” Willis said. “I am so honored to have this opportunity to represent my sorority, Delta Zeta, and Texas State. I would like to thank the gentlemen of Sigma Tau Gamma for this wonderful experience.”
Willis, who competed in the past, reminisced as she prepared for the pageant opening.
“I remember now how nerve racking it can be and now that the hard part is over, it’s all about having fun,” Willis said. “We are looking forward to the pageant and being on stage and having the spotlight on us individually.”
Willis said the hardest part of the pageant was the interview process. Sydnee Sommers disagreed.
“Getting on stage and answering questions is the hard part for me, but through rehearsals and talking to the other women, I was able to get my nerves out,” said Sommers, interdisciplinary studies freshman. “I think every girl should compete in a pageant. You learn things about yourself, and it boosts your confidence level.”
Morris said preparing for the pageant was no easy task.
“It required a great deal of time management, which I feel I have achieved,” Morris said. “Between school and work, I prioritize very well.”
Contestants prepared for the pageant for two weeks.
“It’s been a little long with practices, but it’s been fun getting to know the girls and spending time with everyone,” said Lauren Roig, international business senior. “Pageants are more work than people think, but they are really fun. It’s nice to see the final outcome of the pageant.”