Eight finalists named for 2018 UNK homecoming royalty; Crowning is Thursday

KEARNEY – Eight finalists for homecoming royalty at University of Nebraska at Kearney were announced today (Monday).

The king and queen will be crowned at 9 p.m. Thursday at the Health and Sports Center. They also will be recognized during halftime of UNK’s football game against Emporia State at 2 p.m. Saturday and oversee other homecoming week festivities.

Queen candidates include: Paige Kristensen, Minden; McClain Narber, Phillips; Sarah Petersen, Omaha; Anna Wegener, Lindsay. King candidates include: Ryan Clark, Kearney; Jase Hueser, Papillion; Tyler Nelsen, Lincoln; Odwuar Quiñonez, Lexington.

Finalists were selected by student vote. The final round of voting takes place this week.

Queen candidates, and the organizations they represent, include:

Paige Kristensen, Student Government, Minden
Kristensen is a junior business administration and sports management major. She is chief of staff for Student Government and has been a senator for the College of Education and Election Commission in previous years. She is a member of the Honors Program and Order of Omega. Kristensen is actively involved in Alpha Phi sorority and serves as a Chancellor’s Student Ambassador. She has also been involved as a representative on Student Conduct Board, Panhellenic Recruitment Counselor and Student Diplomat. She recently returned from studying abroad in the Czech Republic. After graduation, Paige wants to be an athletic director on the collegiate level.

McClain Narber, Alpha Phi, Phillips
McClain is a senior elementary education and special education major with a 3.9 GPA. She is a member of Alpha Phi, Mortar Board, Student Government and Kappa Delta Pi. McClain is also involved in Order of Omega, Loper Leaders, Special Olympics College and The Arc of Buffalo County. She currently works at Park Elementary with the Kearney Community Learning Center program and Good Samaritan Society – St. John’s nursing home. She has also served on the Teacher Education Advisory Council and has been on the dean’s list.

Sarah Petersen, UNK Cheer Squad, Omaha
Petersen is a junior communication disorders major. She is assistant director of New Member Education for Alpha Phi sorority and was previously co-director of Sisterhood. Petersen was previously panhellenic vice president of community service and philanthropy, is active in the Honors Program and a co-leader of Alpha Phi bible study. She was the Student Employee Rookie of the Year for her work in the Nebraskan Student Union and Student Engagement Office this past year, has been on the dean’s list two semesters and is a member of Christian Student Fellowship. Recently, she was offered a spot on a NASA research grant, and she would someday like to work in a child rehabilitation facility as a speech pathologist.

Anna Wegener, Loper Programming and Activities Council, Lindsay
Wegener is a senior business administration major with an emphasis in accounting. She is current president of Loper Programming and Activities Council, a member of Honors Student Advisory Board and the Honors Program, where she serves as an honors envoy. Wegener is a Chancellor’s Student Ambassador, member of the National Residence Hall Honorary, Phi Eta Sigma, Beta Alpha Psi and Beta Gamma Sigma. She is also a member of the Catholic Newman Center, has served as a writing tutor in the Learning Commons and works in the Nebraskan Student Union and Student Engagement Office. She has been on the dean’s list since her freshman year.

King candidates, and the organizations they represent, include:

Ryan Clark, Pi Kappa Alpha, Kearney
Clark is a senior majoring in mathematics and business administration with an emphasis in finance. He is president of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, former member of the UNK men’s golf team and a member of the Honors Program. Clark is an active member of Enactus, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Math Club and Mortar Board. He is also a member of Kappa Mu Epsilon, Order of Omega and Student Advocacy Network.

Jase Hueser, Student Government, Papillion
Hueser is a senior majoring in visual communications and design. He is president of International Justice Mission, secretary of the treasury for Student Government and a member of the Honors Program. Hueser is also active in Art Society, American Institute for Graphic Arts, American Advertising Federation and American Association of University Women.

Tyler Nelsen, Phi Delta Theta, Lincoln
Nelsen is a senior majoring in molecular biology / pre-pharmacy. He is a member of the Honors Program, Health Sciences Club and Phi Delta Theta. He is also a member of Order of Omega, participates in undergraduate research and currently is applying to medical schools.

Odwuar Quiñonez, Loper Programming and Activities Council, Lexington
Quinonez is a senior majoring in elementary education. He is event programming chair for Loper Programming and Activities Council, secretary for Phi Delta Theta and senior adviser for Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society. He is involved in Office of Multicultural Affairs, Kappa Delta Pi, Order of Omega, Chi Alpha Epsilon and has been on the dean’s list each of his semesters at UNK. Quinonez has been involved with Loper Leaders, The Arc of Buffalo County and The Big Event. He has served as a peer academic leader for Thompson Scholars Learning Community, peer mentor for the TRIO Program, peer adviser for Financial Aid and New Student Enrollment Leader.

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