News Item

Freshman Arie O'Dell is crowned Miss Lander University 2017-2018

November 06, 2017

Written by Deb Nygro
Photography by Laura Brown


Beauty, flair and poise were abundant at the annual "Miss Lander University" pageant, held November 6 in Lander's Josephine B. Abney Cultural Center Auditorium.

Reflecting their talents and unique personalities, 12 young women took to the stage to compete for the crown during this year's pageant which incorporated elements of the Great Coral Reef. Contestants were judged on talent performance, professional wear and interviews.

Miss Lander University
Aire O'Dell, Miss Lander - webCapturing the title of Miss Lander University 2017-2018 is Arie Catherine O'Dell, of Leesville.

A freshman studying early childhood education, O'Dell is a member of Lander's Sassy Cats dance team, Zeta Tau Alpha (ZTA) and the Honor's College.

Her future aspirations include teaching kindergarten and owning her own arts studio. O'Dell wowed the audience with a delightful dance interpretation of the comical Broadway piece "Alto's Lament."

The performance also won over the judges who declared O'Dell as winner of the talent portion of the pageant.

First Runner-up
Elizabeth Grace Robertson, of Saluda, is first runner-up to the crown. A sophomore majoring in nursing, Robertson is a Presidential Ambassador and member of the Sassy Cat dancers. To showcase her talents, she performed a dance routine to the jazz number "I Wanna Dance".

Second Runner-up
Carrie Anne Floth, of Beech Island is second runner-up to Miss Lander. Floth is a sophomore psychology major and member of the university's Wind Ensemble. She performed her own arrangement of Troye Sivan's "Fools" as her talent performance.

People's Choice Award
Allison Joy Roberson, of Greenwood, is recognized with the People’s Choice Award. Roberson is a senior pursuing a degree in early childhood education. She is also a member of the Palmetto State Teacher's Association, the Lander Association for the Education of Young Children, and the Baptist Collegiate Ministry.

Miss Congeniality
The title of Miss Congeniality is awarded to Allison Renae Kirk, of Saint Simons Island, GA. Kirk is a senior in the university's School of Nursing.

Emceed by Laura Riddle Dennin of the College of Arts and Humanities, the Miss Lander University pageant was presented by the university's chapter of the National Association for Music Education (NAfME).

 Miss Lander Pageant - web

Arie Catherine O'Dell (middle), of Leesville, captures the title of 2017-2018 Miss Lander University during a recent pageant in the Abney Cultural Center Auditorium.  Elizabeth Grace Robertson (right), of Saluda, is first runner-up; and Carrie Anne Floth (left), of Beech Island, is second runner-up to Miss Lander. The pageant was held on Nov. 6.