By Madison Basco
October 14, 2022
Senior Savannah Pierce, representing the OBU marching band, was crowned Ouachita Baptist University’s homecoming queen on Saturday, Oct. 8. Pierce is a Christian Studies major and has been involved in the OBU marching band since her freshman year.
“Marching band has become one of the biggest blessings in my life, “ Pierce said. “It has allowed me to continue doing a hobby that I love. I have made some really good life long friends. Being able to represent an organization that holds so many people, and is something that I have been doing for over 10 years, is really special.”
Initially the marching band did not have a homecoming nomination.
“I had to beg Mr. Lloyd to put in a homecoming nomination because when they started talking about homecoming I was like, ‘why does marching band not have one?’ Pierce said. “ When he finally agreed to put in a homecoming nomination I was really excited, but I was honestly just honored that he would even let me do that. I know that he was probably tired of hearing me talk about it, but I also think he thought I was a good person to represent the OBU marching band.”
Pierce describes that one of the best feelings during the weeks leading up to homecoming was hearing from her peers that they had voted for her, even if they didn’t have a close connection.
“Knowing that they voted for me meant that in some small way I had interacted with them and they felt that I deserved their vote,” Pierce said. “I have given so much to Ouachita and it’s given me so much back in return. I’m just so honored and I don’t really know if there’s another way to say that. Ouachita is the place that I know I can come back to in 20 years and feel so celebrated.”
Pierce explains her emotions during the moment she was crowned.
“Honestly, when I was standing there I was so nervous because Mr. Motl took such a long pause,” Pierce said. “When they said my name, it was a very surreal moment. I felt like I was in a dream. I felt so loved in the fact that people had voted for me as their queen, and it was very humbling to know that people were cheering for me.”
Pierce is honored to have left a legacy at Ouachita through being crowned homecoming queen.
“I strive to walk like Jesus and be at the hands and feet of Jesus in everything I do, and obviously I am not perfect at that, but I strive to love like he does,” Pierce said. “It’s an honor to know that people see me as somebody who loves people and they love me back for that. It’s also [an honor] to be able to represent not only Ouachita, but also the kingdom of God in such a simple way. Being homecoming queen definitely means to me a sense of home, a sense of belonging and just a feeling of being loved and meaning that I left some sort of influence on campus that freshman year Savannah would have never even guessed four years later.”
Pierce’s friends have been greatly uplifting during this time.
“Everyone [has come up to me] and been like “hey queen” which I think is so funny.” Pierce said. “It’s also so encouraging that nothing has really changed, thank goodness. People who see me and know me still joke around and ask what I’m doing. A lot of my friends have told me [I deserve this] and it’s so affirming. It’s very humbling to know that they loved and cared for me before I even had this title. I would jump in front of a bus for every single one of them.”
Pierce’s dad has been one of her biggest encouragers.
“He keeps telling me that he is so proud of me and that he loves me a lot,” Pierce said. “ Earlier he got out of the car and pretended to bow down which was really funny. He has definitely been my biggest supporter in this by just being very caring and loving.”
Overall, Pierce explains that Ouachita has truly shaped her into the person she is today through the people she has met, the professors that have guided her, and the sense of community and love she has been able to experience as a student here.
“Ouachita has impacted my life by just growing me in ways that I didn’t even know were possible,” Pierce said. “It’s impacted the way that I see and do ministry. Ouachita is where I gave my life to Christ when I was younger, and now I get to learn and extend my knowledge here and be able to learn under such great professors and that has just really been impactful. Professors like Dr. Duval, Dr. Pemberton, and people like Rebecca Jones and Hannah Piltcher have poured into me in so many ways. Honestly, I wouldn’t be the person I am without them.”
Being crowned homecoming queen is something that Pierce will be able to hold onto for years.
“I’m in a legacy of such beautiful women who are so strong,” Pierce said.”I will be able to look down the road in 10 years and there are going to be women who are going to follow in my footsteps. There is something so beautiful about that womanhood that I get to share under the name of Ouachita.”
As Pierce’s time at Ouachita is coming to an end, she acknowledges the ways in which this campus has grown her into who she is.
“Ouachita has become such a foundation in who I am and will continue to be after this. I am so thankful that God allowed me to come and [attend] school here and be able to find Ouachita as a safe and steady community that I was so much longing for, but also had no idea that I needed so much until I was right in the middle of it. “