On Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019, David Patterson Jr. and Ciara Williams were crowned Kean's Homecoming King and Queen at the homecoming's halftime show.
Williams is a senior psychology major who is the treasurer of Nu Theta Chi, approaching her second year with the sorority. Previously, she held the position of Secretary and President of Hillel at Kean, a Jewish culture group. Williams enjoys reading and watching movies, making people laugh, and spending time with her sorority sisters.
Williams decided to run for Homecoming Queen because she wanted the opportunity to be recognized in front of the Kean community and have her voice heard. Amid the election, she did not foresee this position presenting such a huge impact because of all the love and support that she has received.
"What I like the most about being Homecoming Queen is that students have been coming up to me saying how much I impacted their lives just by being queen," said Williams. "It makes me realize that this title means so much more than what I thought. I am still being congratulated even a few weeks later, I never thought the spotlight would shine this bright."
Williams believes it is her duty to give back in any way that she can. "I believe what makes a good candidate for Homecoming Queen is the service and community you bring to Kean University," she said. "Anyone can fill the position. But who can make the smallest ant feel large? Who can bring light into the darkness?"
Her message for students who aspire to climb higher is to always be authentic and set attainable goals. "We can truly move mountains if we believe that we can," she says. "All it takes is one step in the right direction." Upon graduating, Williams plans on pursuing her Master of Social Work.
Homecoming King, David Patterson Jr. is a senior psychology major with a community health minor, who is a brother of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity and Vice President of the Pan-African Student Union (P.A.S.U.). He has been a starter for the Kean Varsity Football team for three years in addition to a work study for the Africana Studies Office. Patterson enjoys mentoring adolescents, motivational speaking and fitness.
Patterson decided to run for Homecoming King because he wanted to be a representative of Kean University and to show that anyone has the opportunity to be the face of homecoming, no matter their color or race.
"What I like the most about being Homecoming King is knowing that I have the student body's support," said Patterson. "This puts me in the position to conduct myself at a high standard and represent each student organization I am involved in positively. Throughout my years at Kean, I have made many connections and have built lifelong friendships."
Becoming king gave Patterson confirmation that things in life will pay off. "My academic career was not always the way that it is now," he says. "There were many trials and tribulations I had to go through in the past and coming to college wasn't even a thought for me. Through my mentors and family, I shifted my focus. I can say that I am Homecoming King of a university and am expected to graduate in May."
His message for students who wish to climb higher is to stay focused in the face of adversity. "Everyone has a current circumstance with some being tougher than others," Patterson said. "They are in control of how they respond. Someone could either give an excuse or make the most of a given opportunity." Upon graduating, Patterson aspires to continue mentoring the youth.
Kean University wishes the newly crowned Homecoming King and Queen the best for the future as they continue toward their paths to greatness.