During halftime of the Paris Junior College men’s basketball game against Kilgore College on March 1, 2023, they announced the nominees for Mr. and Miss PJC and named the winners.
PJC faculty and staff nominate students for this honor and the student body votes. To be selected, students must be graduating sophomores with a minimum of 12 semester hours in the current semester and 45 hours completed and having at least a 2.75 GPA.
During halftime, Paris Junior College sophomores Meilana Lopez and Ryan Davis were named Mr. & Miss PJC 2023.
Meilana Lopez, the daughter of Kim and Vince Lopez of Whittier, California, is a 2021 Wittier Christian High School graduate. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), the two-year college honor society, has been named to the PJC Dean’s List and President’s List, and is a two-year member of the PJC Softball Team. She plans to continue her softball career and her psychology studies at a four-year university.
Ryan Davis, the son of Jennifer and Jonathan Davis of Waco, Texas, is a 2021 graduate of Midway High School. He is a PTK, the Student Government Association, and the PJC Baseball Team member. He has been named to the President’s List three times. Davis plans to continue playing baseball at a four-year university and study criminal justice.
Other nominees for Mr. and Miss PJC included:
Brendan V. Batchelder is the son of Maria Batchelder of Denver, Colorado, and a 2015 Denver Center for International Studies graduate. He is a member of PTK, the Student Government Association (SGA), the Texas Student Advisory Council, and the 2023 All-Texas Academic Team. He has been named twice to the President’s List. He represented PJC in Austin at Community College Day 2023. He plans to transfer to the biomedical sciences program at Texas A&M University and apply to medical school afterward.
Coreion Jeffrey is the son of Dayna Heise of Paris, Texas, a 2021 North Lamar High School graduate enrolled in the PJC Vocational Nursing Program. He plans to continue in the LVN to RN program, then obtain his Bachelor of Science in Nursing.
Kelsey Keierleber is the daughter of Meg and Daniel Keierleber of Plano, Texas, and a 2021 Plano East High School graduate. She is a PTK, SGA, and PJC Softball Team member. She was named 2022 Second Team All-Conference Utility Freshman to the NJCAA Academic First Team and has been listed on the President’s List three times. She plans to continue playing softball at a four-year university and get a journalism degree to become a sports broadcaster.
Jax Ortiz is the son of Scott and Rachael Ortiz of Rockwall, Texas, and a 2021 graduate of Rockwall-Heath High School. He is a member of the PJC Baseball Team and plans to transfer to a four-year university to study neurology.
Originally from Como, Italy, Sara Pacifici is a 2020 graduate of Commerce High School. She is a member of Delta Psi Omega, the national drama honor society, and is active in PJC’s drama program. She had roles in the 8th Annual Pyro Playfest, “Sherlock Holmes, and the 1st Baker Street Irregular,” and was stage manager for “Young Frankenstein The Musical.” She plans to transfer to the University of Houston to major in performing arts with a minor in psychology. Later she will pursue a master’s degree in counseling psychology to become a drama therapist.
Samantha Puente is the daughter of Michele Bailey and Edward Puente of Plano, Texas, and a 2021 graduate of Hebron High School. She is a PTK, SGA, and the PJC Softball Team member and has twice been named to the President’s List. She plans to continue playing softball at a four-year university to get her degree in physical therapy in hopes of working with children and young adults.
Nykesha Sanders is the daughter of Frank and Nedra Sanders of Detroit, Michigan, and a 2021 graduate of Chandler Park Academy. She is a member of PTK, has been named twice to the President’s List, and is a two-year member of the PJC Women’s Basketball Team. She will transfer to Texas A&M University-Commerce to continue her basketball career and major in kinesiology.
Jacob Thomas is the son of Brandon and Chey Thomas of Paris, Texas, and a 2021 graduate of Paris High School. He is the SGA president and a member of PTK. Thomas represented PJC in Austin at Community College Day 2023. After graduation, he plans to live long and be happy.