While being on stage and on camera may come as second nature to her now, Jordyn Elston has worked hard to find her ease.
Elston, a senior broadcast journalism major from Birmingham, will be representing the Alabama District in the regional Miss Black and Gold pageant. She won Troy Miss Black and Gold and went on to win the statewide Miss AlphaBama pageant hosted by the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity.
“I will be competing against other Miss Black and Gold winners from other states in March for the title of Miss AlphaSouth (also called Miss Black and Gold)for the Southeastern states,” Elston said.
“I played softball for 14 years, and I did a couple of pageants in middle and high school to experience the sparkly dresses and to take a break from the dirt and cleats,” she said.
“It had been a few years since I was in a pageant, and I missed the dresses ,honestly. My dad is an Alpha, so that is why I chose this specific pageant, but I missed the experience.”
After competing and placing at Troy, Elston competed against 11 other women for the title of Miss AlphaBama in categories such as talent, interview with the judges and questions. School performance also played a factor.
“I’ve never been in a pageant where I had to do a talent before, but I like to write,” she said. “I have my own blog on YouTube, and I wrote a lot as the student news director for Troy TrojanVision News.
“I thought that it would be a good idea to write my own spoken word. I did an original piece for the Troy Black and Gold pageant and a different original piece for the district Miss Black and Gold Pageant. They were both about promoting racial equality. I actually ended up winning the best talent award in both pageants.”
Elston said that her experience with TrojanVision helped her to be more comfortable on the stage for the pageants.
“I was most confident about the interview—I have to interview other people all the time, so I felt like I kind of knew what kind of answers they were looking for,” she said. “I’ve gotten so used to having to speak in front of flashing lights, that it feels almost natural now.
“I still get butterflies right before I hit the stage, but that’s what keeps everything fun.”
However, the pageants weren’t all effortless.
“I was nervous about the on-stage question because the possibilities were endless,” Elston said. “I’m usually caught up on current events due to my work with TrojanVision, but I was still nervous.”
Besides the recent pageants, Elston is the student news director for TrojanVision as well as the public relations chair for the Miss Elite Society.
She also began a program at Troy Elementary School called Happily Ever After to “promote youth literacy.”
“When I first got to Troy, I felt like a small fish in an ocean,” she said. “Since I’ve become more involved on campus, I’ve gotten to know more people, and
I feel like a medium fish in an average pond.
“I just try to do positive things to make sure that I have a positive college experience, and if I happen to impact someone along the way, then I guess I’m doing something right.”
Elston hopes to pursue journalism after she graduates from Troy.
“I do plan to get my master’s degree, and I hope to one day have my own talk show,” she said. “I’ve been in front of the camera for a few years now with TrojanVision and my blog. I can’t imagine myself doing anything else.”
The national competition for the Miss Black and Gold pageant occurs every other year, and with this being an off year, Elston will be done competing at the regional level in March. She will not compete in a national pageant.