By Kristin Burns
Glitz, glamour and a shot at winning the crown of Miss Texas and Miss America await the winner of Baylor’s first annual Miss Green and Gold Pageant.
“What this means is that Miss Green and Gold will be able to go to Miss Texas and compete to go to Miss America,” said Houston junior Amira Lewally, director of the Miss Green and Gold Pageant.
The Miss Green and Gold Pageant will take place on Nov. 1 in Waco Hall. Lewally said she and the current pageant committee have been trying to get a pageant started at Baylor for a year.
Baylor’s pageant signed a contract with Miss Texas to be an “authorized franchise holder for the Miss Texas Pageant,” according to the official contract between Miss Texas and Baylor’s pageant committee. This means the pageant is affiliated with the Miss Texas pageant, but it is not a partner pageant. It authorizes the winner of Miss Green and Gold pageant to go as a representative to compete in Miss Texas.
Baylor received other offers from organizations such as the Miss USA pageant to send the winner of the pageant to compete on a higher level.
“We had other offers, but we looked through all of it,” Lewally said. “Miss America turned out to be the best fit.”
The Miss Green and Gold Pageant will be conducted according to the standards of all pageants affiliated with Miss America. In addition, a representative of the Miss Texas Pageant will attend the show.
“From my understanding, Miss Texas has been waiting for Baylor to be a part of them,” said Gretel Hill, administrative assistant for the dean of student life development and the faculty adviser for the pageant. “They are very excited about it.”
This new agreement is the first opportunity for Baylor women to compete for the crown of Miss America in 2014.
“If Miss Texas’s name is actually on Miss Green and Gold, I think it would draw a lot of people’s attention,” Hill said.
There are 24 women currently registered to compete in the pageant. Registration for this year is closed.
There are a number of rounds that contestants must complete in order to be crowned Miss Green and Gold, Lewally said.
“We were going to do a preliminary cut, but now that we partnered with Miss America and Miss Texas, we don’t have to,” Lewally said. “We’ll use their guidelines and get everyone in our three hour show.”
The pageant will begin with an introduction round where the contestants will introduce themselves to the judges and present their platform for the pageant.
“The platform is just what they believe in,” Lewally said. “It’s the greatest part of the pageant itself because it shows what each girl has to offer and what they want to offer the Baylor community.”
Hill said she hopes that the audience will see that this pageant is not the average “prom queen” pageant.
“I’m hoping that everyone listens to the girl’s platforms and that they raise awareness,” Hill said.
After the introduction round, contestants will continue to the talent round. They will each have two minutes to share a unique talent with the judges. Following this is the formal round that includes the elegant formal dresses that have become the familiar face of beauty pageants. The pageant will conclude with a question and answer session with the judges.
“Our big thing is that each girl will show us who they are so that we can show Baylor who they are,” Lewally said.
Baylor’s champion, “Miss Green and Gold,” will continue on to the Miss Texas Pageant to compete against 48 Texas winners like Miss Dallas and Miss Houston. Baylor’s will be categorized in the pageant under colleges, fairs and festivals.
“I think we are pretty much on the same playing field,” Hill said. “I think our selections, because of who we are and what we stand for, and the girls who are applying, are better, I believe.”
To coincide with Baylor’s standards, the Miss Green and Gold Pageant will not include the swimsuit section of the pageant.
“We are Baylor,” Hill said. “We don’t have to have a swimsuit section in our pageant. We have to have certain standards.”
Hill said she hopes that Baylor’s Miss Green and Gold Pageant and the association with the Miss Texas pageant will bring in a lot more publicity and awareness for the pageant.
“I’m hoping that it will be a success,” Hill said. “I’m hoping that people see our girls and what they have to offer. I think they will be very pleased and proud. I think everything is going to be great.”