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A Royal Affair: Howard Coronates Its Court

Starr Garner and Mya Trujillo

Cecily Davis and Rashan Schoffner

The Royal Court Coronation was nothing short of a royal affair. Howard University officially swore in the 2022-2023 royal court on Sunday alongside Mr. Howard, Rashan Schoffner, and Ms. Howard, Cecily Davis.

“Nowhere at this university will you find a more dedicated group of students to Howard University than here in the royal courtroom,” said Colonel “Cap” Higgins, a senior honors marketing major from Smithfield, Virginia, who hosted the event.

Higgins emphasized how crucial it is to lead by the university’s motto of “Truth and Service” and to serve communities with enthusiasm and grace to keep Howard at the “pinnacle of Black excellence.”  

Lazarus Brown set the tone for the rest of the ceremony with a moving performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” The spotlight beamed down upon the faces of the royal court members, with the women wearing pastel blue gowns, alongside the men in classic, black suits. Miss Howard graced the ballroom in a white, lace gown, while Mr. Howard rocked a white, buttoned-down suit with black slacks.

A lively performance by the Drew Hall and Harriet Tubman Quadrangle Stroll Teams followed the procession. As their stroll ended, the royal court surprised the audience with a choreographed dance to “Zone 6” by rapper Young Nudy, dedicated to Atlanta-raised Schoffner and Davis. 

Soon after, Cynthia Evers, vice president of student affairs, crowned Schoffner and Davis. Each royal court member then spoke of Mr. and Miss Howard in the highest regards before their crownings.

The court’s members referred to Davis as an inspiring role model and mentor who often “takes care of others more than she does herself,” one person put it. Many of them described Schoffner as an older brother who inspires them to reach their fullest potential.   

Mr. and Miss Howard’s families also spoke fondly of them. Schoffner’s parents and aunts spoke of his dedication and determination to be his best self, as he works hard to achieve his aspirations. Davis’ parents stood at the podium and referred to their only daughter as their “favorite girl,” highlighting her faith and desire to help anyone as much as possible. Following these remarks, a father-daughter dance to “Never Enough” by Loren Allred left not a dry eye in the house. 

Later that evening, Mr. Cathy Hughes School of Communications, Jabari Richardson, said he yearns to aid people in turning their dreams into reality. Richardson, a junior television and film major, said he plans to do so by helping “students make sure their education turns into job opportunities and career opportunities.” 

Ms. SOC, Michayla Maxwell, a junior broadcast journalism major, is passionate about “inspiring the students of SOC with different events and initiatives through their matriculation at Howard.”  

Maxwell’s platform is called “Pushing C: Collaboration, Communication and Creativity.” She hopes to shed light on the various scholarships, internships and opportunities available to SOC students and aid them in connecting with their peers. She also wants to encourage SOC students to “embrace their creative side” and take advantage of every opportunity to gain the skills and experience necessary to ensure success after graduation.

Richardson’s platform, “ACE: Action through Care and Encouragement,” is centered around the mentorship, tutoring and advancement of both communications students and “local children in the D.C. area.” He believes it is important to “be involved in the outside world” to execute Howard’s mission effectively and better oneself.  

As the ceremony ended, the crowd rushed to the dance floor to celebrate an unforgettable evening of togetherness and love.