Meet homecoming royalty Sydni Jackson and Amanda Vollmer

2019 homecoming royalty

Civil engineering and Spanish major Sydni Jackson, left, and nursing major Amanda Vollmer were crowned as homecoming royalty Saturday during the Dinner and Dance. (Photo courtesy of the Office of Student Involvement)

For the first time in the University of Missouri–St. Louis’ longstanding homecoming tradition, students were able to vote for any two royalty candidates, regardless of gender identity.

The shift in voting led to the crowning of Sydni Jackson and Amanda Vollmer Saturday during the Dinner and Dance at the Marriott St. Louis Grand Hotel.

Following their wins, UMSL Daily caught up with Jackson, a civil engineering and Spanish major, and Vollmer, a nursing major, about the homecoming festivities and other favorite experiences at UMSL.

What organization sponsored you for homecoming court, and why is this organization important to you?

Sydni Jackson: The University Program Board sponsored me for homecoming court. UPB is important to me because I think the mission is valuable. Getting students involved outside of the classroom is just as important as keeping them focused inside. Students who are involved tend to do better academically. I’ve been on the executive board of UPB for three years and have served as the executive chair for the past two years. 

Amanda Vollmer: I was sponsored by the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. This organization is important to me because they are the voice for student-athletes on campus to the athletic department and beyond. They also contribute beyond athletics by hosting various fun events in order to raise money for organizations like Make-A-Wish.

What did winning homecoming royalty mean to you?

SJ: Winning homecoming royalty is the culmination of my involvement during my time at UMSL. I am honored that I have the opportunity to represent UMSL in this capacity. Homecoming royalty should depict the image of an UMSL student and be a model of the UMSL community that represents what UMSL stands for to others, and I am grateful that the UMSL community chose me as one of those representatives.

AV: Winning homecoming royalty means another opportunity to represent the university I love, and I am very excited to do so. I was so grateful to experience all the events royalty court entailed and make new friends along the way.

What was your favorite part of homecoming week?

SJ: My favorite part of homecoming week is the Lip Sync Competition. I always love watching everyone’s performances, and it’s so much fun to prepare for. The past three years that I have participated in lip sync have been so much fun, and you really bond even more with the people that you are practicing with.

AV: My favorite part of homecoming week was winning the lip sync battle in the gold division. Performing was so much fun, and winning was the cherry on top. We definitely were not expecting it, but we are so glad the dance came together as well as it did.

Finish this sentence: I chose UMSL because …

SJ: I chose UMSL because of the awesome engineering program. Students get a high-quality education at an affordable price. It is also accessible to nontraditional students who may work during the day by offering night classes. For those of us who do not have full-time jobs during the day, it still presents a wonderful opportunity to have the availability to seek out co-ops and internships during the day because the program is located in a major metropolitan area.

AV: I chose UMSL because my spot on the volleyball team brought me here. However, I love UMSL for so many reasons. I love it because of the community feeling on campus and all the friends I have made. I love it because the St. Louis area offers many social and professional opportunities. Finally, I love it because of the affordable price.

What is your favorite UMSL memory?

SJ: My favorite UMSL memory actually happened before I even started at UMSL. I participated in the Student For A Day program the spring before I started school here, and that allowed me to meet some amazing people who have become some of my best friends, coworkers and even helped me with the homecoming competition.

AV: My favorite experience at UMSL is beating Rockhurst this past season. We had a rough season compared to others, so our confidence dwindled toward the end of the season. Rockhurst was ranked in the top 25 nationally, so it was really thrilling to be able to beat them in four sets.

What has been your most rewarding experience at UMSL?

SJ: My most rewarding experience at UMSL has been working for the University Program Board. I’ve become more involved on campus than I ever could have imagined. It has presented me with so many amazing opportunities, and I have gotten to know so many wonderful people, students and staff who I would not have known otherwise. They are the most amazing and supportive people I could ever ask for.

AV: The most rewarding experience at UMSL has been winning homecoming royalty. Members of the royalty court put in a lot of hard work and planning ahead of time. It was a very stressful week for me and everyone else, so it was really rewarding to see my work come together for the win.

Once you graduate from UMSL, what is your dream job?

SJ: My dream job is one that allows me to use both of my majors, a job that lets me use my Spanish and engineering/problem-solving skills to help people.

 AV: I am not exactly sure what my dream job is yet. However, I think would love to be a labor and delivery nurse. Being able to help new life come into the world is such an exciting experience, and I would love to do it every day. Graduate school is possibly in the future. However, I’ll just focus on my undergrad for now.

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