Life of a Southern Queen:

courtesy Shavante McKendall

A well-known name around the Southern University A&M campus is holding weight with their impact on the university through affiliation with multiple programs, accolades, and accomplishments all around. Her name is Shavante’ McKendall. From New Orleans, Louisiana, Ms. McKendall is a senior majoring in accounting who views herself as an overachiever who is determined to strive for nothing less than success within any and everything, she involves herself with.

McKendall has been recognized for her excellence within the many organizations she has been and is currently affiliated with. Organizations she has been recognized in would consist of being an inductee of the International Honors Society of Beta Gamma Sigma through the College of Business in the Fall of 2019, former member of the Gold N’ Bluez Dance Team, a Fall 2020 inductee of The Collegiate 100 Black Women of Southern University, former Miss ROTC of Southern University’s Army ROTC Program, current Miss Black and Gold of The Beta Sigma Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated. Though COVID has many restrictions in effect, she feels as if she should and still makes plans to do for the campus and the community throughout this tough time. Her introduction to this came from a former graduate and member of the fraternity who thought she would be well qualified and would excel within the pageants the university would hold for the organization.

The day before the first pageant she participated in, McKendall noted that she felt as if she was not fully prepared for it at all and thought she would not do well. McKendall stated, “Everything started to fall into place because I had that support system that made sure I had everything I needed.” Within accepting this challenge, McKendall prospered and secured her crown as Miss Black and Gold.

Among her many college years, one of the first programs she has affiliated herself with was the Southern University Army ROTC Program. McKendall was firstly introduced with the U.S. Army back in high school with taking JROTC courses, in which at this time it was a requirement to graduate. This would better influence her to be involved with the ROTC Program at Southern University A&M College as she wanted to dance for the school. McKendall said, “I wanted to dance at Southern… I wanted to go to school to do ROTC anyways, so why not do it at Southern.” With this motivation, she later attended Southern University and had the opportunity to join not only the Army ROTC Program, but also became a member of the Gold N’ Bluez Dance Team. McKendall would go on to become 2018-2019 Miss Army ROTC, and now she currently holds the position as the Battalion Commander of the Southern University U.S. Army ROTC Program. Her job as the Battalion Commander plays a huge role within impacting the lives of those who are involved within the program. As BC of the organization, McKendall’s role is to instruct those who are new that come before her in the right direction with the appropriate knowledge needed to help them progress within not only their lives, but within their military careers as well.

With each program she is in affiliation with, McKendall hopes to inspire people to go for anything they desire as she has done. There have been those who have reached out to her in regards to acknowledging how much of an impact in giving them motivation to push on how she is able to manage her everyday life with everything she has to do in her life from school to military priorities. With all the accomplishments achieved throughout her college career, McKendall feels as if she will continue to motivate those to continue to drive forward on their personal goals in hopes of achieving them with no doubt within whatever they choose to do.

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