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A spirit that is not afraid

Kathryn Kennedy reflects on year as Miss Auburn

<p>Kathryn Kennedy holds flowers after learning she will be the newest Miss Auburn on Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.</p>

Kathryn Kennedy holds flowers after learning she will be the newest Miss Auburn on Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.

On Feb. 6, 2018, Kathryn Kennedy was surrounded by friends when she was announced as Miss Auburn. 

Growing up in a split household, Kennedy had parents who cheered for Auburn and for Alabama. She chose Auburn. Having a sister who had already chosen to attend Auburn, Kennedy decided The Loveliest Village on The Plains was just the place for her. 

“It already felt like home before I even became a student, and so it’s actually the only place I applied,” she said. 

When Kennedy was accepted, she said she was even more excited to enter campus and begin her college life. She dove right in and took advantage of a multitude of involvement opportunities, well before undertaking the position of Miss Auburn.

Kennedy served as a Camp War Eagle parent counselor in addition to acting as the director of Freshman Forum with the Student Government Association.

Not only did her knowledge of her University increase as a parent counselor, but the future Miss Auburn gained a variety of skills she would need in her position. 

“So I think [being a parent counselor] really prepared me in talking to adults and just being able to relate to them and being kind of a representative — the student representative of Auburn to those parents,” Kennedy said. “[Being a parent counselor] gave me better skills on presentations and giving tours of campus.” 

She said the friends she made and the relationships she formed through these on-campus experiences gave her the support system to carry her through elections and her position. 

“They’re the ones that really encouraged me and challenged me and supported me to get there and supported me through the process,” Kennedy said. 

Coming to Auburn, she said she never would have expected to serve in such a highly regarded position as Miss Auburn. 

“I always really admired that role and admired the person in the role, but I never thought I would get that opportunity,” Kennedy said. 

In her junior year, a friend approached her with the proposition of nominating her for the role. Following the nomination, however, SGA chooses the top 20 and then top 5 candidates through a series of applications and interviews. She made it through that portion of the process, and a long few months ensued.

Callouts arrived on Feb. 7 after a day of campaigning by her team. 

“I felt very loved that day and very thankful for all those people who would take time out of their day to help me with my campaign,” Kennedy said. 

When the time came for the results, she said she was excited and not only had her friends there to support her, but she was surrounded by family, too. 

“After I heard my name, it was just a bunch of screaming, some tears, tons of pictures, but it was truly so fun,” Kennedy said. 

Representing Auburn to the community and being the official host of the University may seem like a broad role, and Kennedy said in some ways, it is. Her day-to-day routine would widely vary, and no one day would ever look the same.

Kennedy met regularly with a Miss Auburn advisor to discuss upcoming events or projects. Part of her role is to represent the school with the War Eagle Girls and Plainsmen. In addition, Kennedy worked closely with other officials at Auburn and said one of the best parts was getting to meet alumni and administrators of the University. 

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“For any week, I could have two events or I could have up to five events,” she said. “It really does depend. And these events could be working with Dr. Leath and working an event at the president’s home or working with the Office of Development and talking with alumni, or it could be helping a student organization.”

Kennedy said she had to remember that she was a student, in addition to holding the role of Miss Auburn. She had to make sure to take time to handle her other responsibilities, as well as time for herself. But she wouldn’t have had it any other way.

“All the time spent with that role and just balancing student life, and that was so so worth it,” Kennedy said. “Every event and every opportunity and experience I got to do was truly so amazing.”

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