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South Carolina High School Elects First Ever Black Homecoming Queen In Its 155-Year History

Porter-Gaud High School in Charleston, South Carolina has not had a Black homecoming queen during the entirety of its 155-year existence. But that changed this year.

Senior Amber Wilsondebriano made history when she was elected by her peers as the 2023 homecoming queen.

“When I was nominated, I didn’t feel confident I would win,” said Wilsondebriano.

“However, throughout the week, many students told me they were voting for me. When the day came, and my name was called, I was relieved and honored because I knew I was a part of history,” Wilsondebriano continued. “I was elated the whole night. My peers made me feel special for the day.”

Wilsondebriano has been overwhelmed with all of the well wishes. “So many children of all ethnicities asked to take pictures with me as the new queen,” she told USA Today. “I’m so happy to have been chosen as homecoming queen for my character and achievements, not because of my race.”

It’s both beauty and brains for the 17-year-old. With a 4.66 GPA, the accolades don’t stop there. She is co-president of the school’s Chinese Club and has received the biliteracy seal, twice.

In addition, she has co-founded several clubs, including the Black Excellence Society. She thought this was needed at her school for Black students to have the ability to convene in a safe space as well as brainstorm ideas to add diversity to the majority white school.

“There are less than 10 Black people in my senior class,” Wilsondebriano explained. “When we have our meetings, every Black student in the school can fit in one classroom.”

“I can’t say enough how supportive the school has been of the club,” she added, “They have funded catering for us and gave us a classroom to hold our meetings. I appreciate the school very much,” stated Wilsondebriano.

Monique Wilsondebriano, Amber’s mother, told WGME13, “We’re reluctant to talk about race, but we kind of have to. Amber’s classmates elected her not because she is Black, but because they genuinely love her.”

“Amber is smart, funny, and has always been a friend to anyone she meets,” Monique added, “The fact that these kids, most of whom do not look like her, saw something special in Amber and voted her to be their homecoming queen, means the world to us.”

Chevalo Wilsondebriano, Amber’s father, also chimed in with praise, “It’s remarkable how far this country has progressed.” “This achievement is a testament to Dr. King’s dream of the day we can all be judged, not by the color of our skin, but by the content of our character,” Chevalo said.

After graduation, Wilsondebriano will be heading to The Savannah College of Art and Design where she plans to be a painting major. Her career aspirations: become a children’s writer and book illustrator.

Source : Essence