Lim & McKernan Crowned Mr. and Ms. Clarkson College 2017

Student Activities Council (SAC) hosted the ninth annual Clarkson College Casino Night on Feb. 8 in Howard Hall. The affinity students have for Casino Night makes it one of the longest-standing events on campus, while the Mr. and Ms. Clarkson College crowning that accompanies it is a tradition that reigns on after more than 70 years.

The first ever Ms. Clarkson was Anna Marie Baltensperger, who received her crown in 1943. With the arrival of male students in the Nursing program, Darrell Kuster became the first Mr. Clarkson in 1978. The crowning ceased from 1992–2003 and resumed in 2004.

For the last several years, the student body, faculty and staff have cast their votes for Mr. and Ms. Clarkson College candidates toward the end of January and are encouraged to nominate students who demonstrate the Clarkson College Vales of Caring, Integrity, Commitment, Learning and Excellence. This year’s nominees were Kyle Chandler, Andrew Lim, Eli Moseman, Adrienne Ashley, Maggie Mckernan and Kimi Miller.

The final vote cast at Casino Night ruled Lim and McKernan as the 2017 royalty. They jovially accepted their sashes, crowns and bouquets (a flower arrangement for McKernan and a candy bar medley for Lim) and each received a $100 scholarship.

Lim is originally from Indonesia and enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program in spring 2016. He stays active on campus serving as a Student Ambassador, Public Relations Chair for the Student Nurses Association and IT Chair for the Clarkson College Sigma Alpha Pi chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success. He plans to graduate in summer 2018 and later enroll in a BSN to DNP program to prompt his career as a family nurse practitioner. He has a deep-seeded interest in public health and hopes to augment his career by conducting research and providing services at health clinics in low-income areas.

“It means a lot to me to be elected as Mr. Clarkson College because it tells me that the faculty and student body believe in my ability to represent the College and to be the best health care provider I can be,” said Lim. “I hope to continue to represent the Values that Clarkson College espouses.”

McKernan enrolled in the Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) program in fall 2016. She is involved with Love Your Melon, an apparel brand dedicated to giving a hat to children battling cancer, and the Clarkson College Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU) organization. Given she is just a few months into her program, McKernan is uncertain which types of settings or populations appeal most to her as she ponders career tracks following her August 2018 graduation.

Honored to be elected as Ms. Clarkson College 2017, McKernan said seeing her classmates and friends cheering her on as she received her crown was an incredible feeling.

Lim and McKernan were not the only students to win big that evening. After cashing in their poker chips, students placed raffle tickets in the prize buckets of their choice. Giveaways included an Apple iPad Mini, a Roku 3, an Echo Dot and gift cards to Nebraska Furniture Mart, Netflix, Amazon, iTunes, Google Play and more.

“Without a doubt, the students enjoyed themselves and enjoyed interacting with faculty and staff in this relaxed environment,” said Dr. Kris Hess, Student Services Director. "It was fun to provide this event for them and great to hear all their cheers and laughter!"

Student Activities Council extends thanks to JoAnn Acierno, Lori Bachle, Mary Dishman, Debi Gardner, Chuck MacDonell, Chris Mason, George Smith, Kris Smith and Trish Weber for staffing the game stations and helping carry on the fun tradition of Casino Night.