In the midst of trying times, Kentucky State University Homecoming 2021 a resounding success

In the midst of trying times, Kentucky State University Homecoming 2021 a resounding success

The Kentucky State University community of students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends celebrated the in-person return of Homecoming with an uplifting and resilient spirit Oct. 4-9. 

Homecoming 2020 was virtual due to the pandemic, but was brought back with extra precautions for 2021. With the recent transition in leadership and financial challenges, Kentucky State constituents had a choice: to be pitiful or powerful in their celebration. Thorobreds chose power throughout the week’s festivities. 

Kentucky State officially crowned its new royalty Thursday evening during the 2021 coronation. Dezyree’ Marie Fields and Christian Xavier White ascended the throne as the 92nd Miss Kentucky State University and the 28th Mister Kentucky State University. Fields is a social work major with a minor in speech from Indianapolis, Indiana. White is a communications major with a focus in public relations from Mississippi.  

A Thorobred cancer survivor was honored Friday morning during the Breast Cancer 5K Walk at Kentucky State. Chrystal Woodard was honored and recognized for beating cancer and her story received media attention. Thorobreds participated in the walk to honor those fighting cancer and those who’ve lost the battle, as well as bring awareness to the cause.  

The University celebrated Founder’s Day on Friday, where the message was uplifting and bold. 

Kentucky State University Acting President Clara Ross Stamps spoke about the past and future of Kentucky State.

Our ancestors envisioned this day for Kentucky State University,” Stamps said. “It’s not by accident. This institution was created for us, so we have to speak life into our future. We will not be the first public state institution to close. Not Kentucky State University. It will be here for another 135 years.”  

Dr. Corey Hicks, a 1995 alumnus, provided the convocation address. Hicks talked about how his grades and ACT scores led him to believe college wasn’t for him, but Kentucky State nurtured him and helped mold him into what he is today. Hicks holds a Bachelor of Arts in education from Kentucky State University, a Master of Science in health science from Concordia University Irvine in California, a Ph.D. in health and human performance from Concordia University Chicago in River Forest. He is also a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated, and the founder and CEO of the Three V’s LLC.

Inspirational Thorobreds were also honored at Kentucky State, such as trailblazers like Dr. Lee Charles Harris, who was instrumental in developing the School of Nursing, and Darren E. Bryant, who became the youngest Black mayor in Illinois history with his recent victory in the Robbins mayoral election. 

The Golden Classes of 1970 and 1971 were honored and celebrated with special recognition at Founder’s Day, as well as throughout the weekend. The golden classes showed their youth and exuberance on the dance floor in the 1886 Stable Club on game day, proving they’ve still got it. 

New members of the Kentucky State University K Club Athletic Hall of Fame were inducted as part of Homecoming, as well. Isadore Rich, Kenneth Joiner, Kristic Ploucha, Larry Adams, Marshall Glover Jr., and Steven Baldon Jr. made up the class of 2021 Athletic Hall of Fame.

In what some described as the one of the best concerts in Kentucky State University Homecoming history, Midnight Star wowed the crowd at Alumni Stadium Friday night. Thorobreds young and old came out to enjoy and celebrate the successful alumni, who topped the charts in the 1980s with hits like “Operator”, “Freak-A-Zoid” and “No Parking (On the Dance Floor)”. 

The Frankfort community showed up in strong support of Kentucky State for the Homecoming parade, which featured amazing marching bands from around the land, including the Mighty Marching Thorobreds. The message from the community was clear: we stand with Kentucky State.  

On the football field, the Thorobreds put an exclamation point on the weekend and reiterated the message of the week: Kentucky State is not to be underestimated. The Breds dominated the Lane College Dragons 49-14 with a punishing ground game and stout defense. Lane was riding a four-game win streak and coming off the heels of a 71-0 win against Texas College the week prior before running into the Thorobreds and the Homecoming crowd at Alumni Stadium.  

As Homecoming 2021 came to a close, Thorobreds looked forward with renewed strength, and high hopes for the future of Kentucky State.