Every year, Homecoming Court recognizes the brightest and most exemplary leaders of the senior class at Michigan State University. These students are hand-selected to represent the diverse student body at MSU through attending various events. The 2021 Court consisted of 10 students, two of which were Tower Guard alumni. Maddy Niblock, secretary of the Tower Guard Class of 2019-2020, and Eliot Haddad, general member of the Tower Guard class of 2019-2020, represented the prestige of Tower Guard through their time on Homecoming Court. Tower Guard is a second-year student organization dedicated to serving the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities (RCPD). Tower Guard members volunteer their time to provide a variety of services, such as creating more accessible textbooks, holding one-on-one tutoring sessions, and promoting inclusivity and diversity across the MSU campus.
To be considered for Homecoming Court, applicants must submit an application and letter of recommendation. After close review of these applications, applicants are invited to attend an interview prior to selection. Maddy’s interest piqued after attending a football game and watching the 2019 Homecoming Court be announced. Immediately after the game, Maddy went home and researched how she could become a part of Homecoming Court. Eliot was encouraged by his mentor to apply, and after much deliberation, he decided to give it a shot. He says, “it was a special opportunity to give back to MSU, which has already given me so much.”
Throughout their year on Homecoming Court, members must attend several events, especially during the week of Homecoming. Some of these engagements included Sparticipation, the President’s Reception at Cowles House, alumni dinners, the Homecoming parade and football game, and a WKAR event with Dr. Ross Lee, the Grand Marshal. Homecoming Court continues to be active even beyond the Homecoming season, attending events scattered throughout the academic year as well as assisting with the selection of next year’s Court. Maddy reflects on her time with Homecoming Court by saying, “My favorite part of being on Homecoming Court was having the opportunity to interact with many high achieving students, faculty, and staff at MSU.” Eliot adds to this, stating, “My favorite part has been meeting the other Court members who are all so special and unique. They are truly exemplary Spartans and it has been an honor to stand alongside them.”
Eliot and Maddy were prepared for the responsibilities of Homecoming Court through their experiences with Tower Guard. The rigor of Tower Guard provided them with a perspective on the inner-workings of MSU and an understanding of how to communicate effectively with people of high importance at MSU. Eliot comments, “Being in Tower Guard, a prestigious organization in its own right, really prepared me to be on the Homecoming Court by emphasizing a commitment to others and making our Spartan community a better place. Additionally, both Tower Guard and Homecoming Court depend on students being role models and making a meaningful impact within our community.”
In their final comments, Eliot and Maddy share advice and gratitude from their time on Homecoming Court. Eliot says, “I want to thank all the wonderful students, faculty, staff, and community members who I have interacted with during my time at MSU. These years have been amazing, and I know that ‘Spartans Will’ keep making lasting improvements from the grassroots to the global scale well into perpetuity.” Maddy encourages rising seniors to apply for this group by sharing, “If you are even remotely interested in being on the Homecoming Court, you should 100% apply. Being on the court has easily been one of the best experiences of my college career, and Tower Guard members make great candidates.”