Q&A: Miss Black OSU discusses her year as queen and the impact of MLK Jr.'s activism

Aundrea Jackson

Aundrea Jackson was crowned Miss Black OSU on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019.

With three weeks left in her term as Miss Black OSU, the O'Colly had the opportunity to talk with Aundrea Jackson about what being MBOSU has been like and what MLK Jr. Day means to her. Crowned MBOSU on Feb. 9, 2019, Jackson has had nearly a year to solidify her beliefs on activism and the power of black activists.

What does MLK Jr. Day mean to you?

"For me, MLK day is a representation of activism. I feel like we have a lot of activists that came before us that don’t necessarily get recognized, so for us to have a day when one of them does [get recognized] is phenomenal. Especially with the impact that Dr. MLK made, not only in his day, but today, too."

Have you participated in any MLK Jr. day activism events?

"I haven’t been to an MLK day parade, but I feel like it's powerful to watch them. I would love to see a parade like that on campus. We tried to do one last year, but it didn’t work out. Hopefully, if we can get more volunteers, we’ll be able to pull it off."

 What has your year being Miss Black OSU been like?

"It has definitely been busy, but every moment of it has been worth it. I’ve had the opportunity to do so many things… interviews, speeches, poetry. Pretty much everything across the board. I get to implement my platform as an activist, which its been specifically about activism and encouraging it on campus, not only when unfortunate events happen, but all the time. So That’s my favorite part, implementing my platform. And its not necessarily to the scale of Dr. Martin Luther King, but it is something that individuals can do on campus."

How do you feel about the Miss Black OSU Pageant coming up again?

"I’m excited. It's the 50th anniversary so we’re going to have the past queens come. I feel like, with the queens, we’ll also have a better audience than last year. It’s also Black History Month, so that’s exciting as well."

 Any idea how you’ll feel passing on the crown to you successor?

"I think it’s humbling. One: for me to get the opportunity to do something like that. Two: I know that the contestants we have will be impactful on this campus. It’s a bittersweet moment because you know you did everything you could but you know that you’re also passing it off to someone who is going to do the same. I feel humbled."

Over the past year, does any one memory stand out as particularly impactful?

"I feel like I’ve had a lot... But my favorite would probably be the day of the pageant. I wrote a poem, and I go to present it. It was called “Being Black”. I think it emphasized how I felt as a black student on campus, and I think a lot of other students were able to relate to that. I think sharing my story and relating to the other stories around me was probably the most powerful thing I’ve done during my time."

 Is there any message you’d like to share as Miss Black OSU?

"Continue to be an activist not only when incidents happen, because unfortunately they do happen around MLK day, but continuing to be an activist at all times, as opposed to momentarily. One thing that I always say is that activism is a movement, not just a motion, so it’s something that we constantly need to be doing. Not just when its beneficial for us."