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Meet Ole Miss’s Homecoming Queen for 2016: MK Phillips

MK Homecoming

Mary Kathryn “MK” Phillips was always going to be a Rebel. As the daughter of two Ole Miss alumni, Phillips never had much of a choice as to where her allegiances aligned.

Growing up an hour away from Oxford in Memphis, Tennessee, Phillips spent her Saturdays in the fall cheering on the Rebs in the grove. She went to school at St. George’s Independent School, a smaller school with only 93 members in her graduating class. Phillips describes it as the type of place where she “knew everyone’s middle name and favorite color.”

Even with a smaller school, Phillips enjoyed the sense of community and family she had grown up with. When she looked around at different colleges and even went on a couple tours, she knew where her heart belonged. She didn’t just fall in love with her parents alma mater, but her family’s alma mater, where aunts, uncles, cousins, and even her older brother attended. She describes the feeling as “a dream to go to Ole Miss.”

Phillips and her friends Courtney, Taysa and Jordan.
Phillips and her friends Courtney, Taysa and Jordan.

However, not only was her dream to attend Ole Miss, Phillips wanted to be on the sidelines cheering on her Ole Miss Rebels. After cheering throughout high school at St. George’s, a reluctant Phillips believed “there was no way she would ever make it.”

Now, along with her three best friends Courtney, Taysa, and Jordan, she has been cheering on the Rebels for the past four years. One of her favorite things about being a cheerleader is “being able to support and cheer on different athletic teams around campus.” She especially enjoys “adding a little Rebel spirit into everyone’s day.”

It’s safe to say Phillips made the right decision.

When asked about the past four years, she said, “[It’s] going by so fast. I had these great, high expectations, and it has nothing but exceeded my expectations. Ole Miss has made my college experience so surreal… the people, the community, the teachers, my teammates, my sorority sisters, everything – I don’t want to leave.”

img_1007In addition to cheering on the Rebs dutifully for the past four years, Phillips has also served on the Student Alumni Council, the Student Activity Association, and this past summer, she welcomed incoming freshman as an orientation leader. And now, another accomplishment she can add to her resume: Ole Miss’s 2016 Homecoming Queen.

It’s not every year her sorority, Chi Omega, nominates someone, but when Phillips was chosen out of all her sisters, she said, “It was an absolute honor to represent my sorority as a whole.”

“The most rewarding part was meeting different members and peers of the community, sharing my love for Ole Miss,” Phillips said. “Some of the struggles of campaigning included all the different rules, but I was determined to do everything right.”

Of course, Phillips did a lot of things right. However, after a tight run-off with Caroline Burke, being announced Ole Miss’s 2016 Homecoming Queen still came as shock.

img_1009-2While waiting outside the Lyceum, Phillips said she was “thankful to be there win or lose, and it was great experience.”

“But when they called MK, it was just a feeling I really could not describe,” Phillips said. “I immediately started bursting into tears. I was so overwhelmed with the entire experience, and so much support and love has gotten me through the way. I am absolutely honored to represent Ole Miss as homecoming Queen.”


By John Touloupis, an intern for HottyToddy.com. He can be reached jtouloup@go.olemiss.edu.

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