Miss Native ENMU Information
POSTPONED DUE TO COVID-19 HEALTH ORDERS
What is Miss Native ENMU?
The Miss Native ENMU pageant is hosted annually by the office of Native-American Affairs during Native-American Heritage Month in November. Contestants must be single, have no dependents and hold a Certificate of Indian Blood (C.I.B) to be eligible to compete. Miss Native ENMU will hold her title for an entire academic year (November to November), and will receive a sensible scholarship for her attributions to Multicultural Affairs and the faculty/student body.
Miss Native ENMU provides Native Women an opportunity to represent their families, traditions and tribe(s) as they showcase their unique culture through public speaking, traditional attire, and traditional talent. When crowned, Miss Native ENMU should endorse her cultural ways with Native and Non-Native individuals. She must possess Native American characteristics, a reputable personality, general poise and appearance, maintain high moral standards, and must be interested in pursuing a higher educational goal in her chosen field of study. She should be courteous during events hosted by Multicultural Affairs, Native American Affairs and any other invitational events. It should be in her best interest to attend all events. These events will encourage her individuality, traditional heritage and knowledge of all cultures.
If you or someone you know are interested in competing, you can download the Miss Native ENMU application here. After you have printed and filled out the application, please return it to the Native-American Affairs Office located in the Alley.
Miss Native ENMU 2018
Miss Native ENMU 2018-2019 Vivian Lueras
Parents: Anthony and Carvella Lueras
Tribal Affiliation: Zuni
Major: Master of Business Administration
1. What made you want to run for Miss Native ENMU 2018-2019?
Being a young Native American woman, I wanted to take this opportunity to represent my Tribe and my family.
2. What made you attend ENMU?
My older brother was an ENMU Alumni and I became very familiar with the campus while he was attending. I really enjoyed all of my visits to the campus and how friendly the faculty and community were. I could tell that Student Success was important at this University and knew that I would be successful here.
3. Describe where you are from and your family heritage.
I was born in Gallup, NM but grew up in the Village of Los Lunas, NM just outside of Albuquerque. I am half Zuni Pueblo and half Hispanic, but both of these cultures are very intertwined with their customs. One way that our Zuni People express their cultural traditions is through their painting, pottery, fetish carvings, and jewelry. These things have significant meaning, and to the Zuni people, help to unite the past with the present. My Maternal Grandparents are the last two in my immediate family that speak our Native Language. My Great Great Grandfather Juan Rey Nastacio who was one of New Mexico's Outstanding Centenarians was the Governor of Zuni in 1923.
4. How do you embrace your culture?
I try my best to embrace my culture by attending as many traditional dances, family gatherings, and festivities as I can. I am currently trying to learn my Zuni Language little by little. I also take pride in wearing my traditional dress and moccasins on certain occasions as well as cooking and baking traditional foods with my Mom and Grandmother.
5. What do you feel you can contribute to Multicultural Affairs?
As a Graduate Student, I feel that I can use my experience to mentor and be a role model for young students in Multicultural Affairs. I also feel that my involvement with other organizations on campus and my outgoing personality will help me to work as an ambassador to spread cultural diversity here at Eastern.
6. How would you encourage others to embrace their cultures?
I hope to encourage others to realize that culture makes us all unique and special. Everyone should be proud of their culture and I want to encourage others to discuss and learn more about their traditional customs and family heritage.
7. What is/was your favorite multicultural presentation so far?
My favorite multicultural presentation so far was the Native American Heritage Month Finale: Suicide Prevention Presentation by Dyami Thomas. I felt like his presentation had such an impact on everyone there and it was a good reminder that we are ALL strong, powerful, and beautiful.
8. What is your favorite thing about ENMU?
My favorite thing about ENMU is how welcoming and friendly the faculty, students, and Portales community are. You feel like you become part of a family when you are here.
9. How has being Miss Native ENMU 2018-2019 affected your perspective on your culture?
Becoming Miss Native ENMU has definitely empowered me to embrace my culture more than I ever have. I've always been familiar with our customs and traditions, but I feel that this title has helped me to celebrate and become a role model for my people. I have a greater understanding of how much I am representing my culture, tribe, and family, and that I just want to represent everyone well.
10. What is the one aspect of your culture that you feel most passionate about?
One aspect of my culture that I feel most passionate about is the traditional dress. I think the colors, patterns, and jewelry are so beautiful and unique! I love all of the different pieces, fabrics, and materials involved in the whole outfit. Every aspect of the dress is special and has a purpose.
11. If you could describe your culture with three words what would they be and why?
Three words I would use to describe my culture would be unique, distinct, and isolate. Unique meaning one of a kind; unlike anything else. Distinct in that our tribe has managed to remain unaffected by outer worldly influences. And isolate to describe how our Zuni language differs and is set apart from other Pueblo Languages, often the Keresan language.
12. What's your favorite part about being Miss Native ENMU 2018-2019?
My favorite part about being Miss Native ENMU is the opportunity I am receiving to represent so many people. As I mentioned before, this title allows me to be an ambassador for not only MY culture, but ALL of the unique and diverse ethnic groups we have here on our campus and around the world. I also enjoy being involved with Multicultural Affairs and getting to experience and learn about cultures different from my own.
13. Who is your biggest influence and why?
My biggest influence is my family, most especially my two older brothers. They have always been such good role models for me and when I see how hard they work every day; it makes me want to be the best person I can be. They've set such a good example for me while I was growing up and I really hope to do the same for my younger brother as well.
14. If there is one thing you wanted the ENMU community to know about your culture what would it be?
One thing that I want the ENMU community to know about my culture is that the Zuni are a very happy, hospitable, and proud people. We are very adamant about keeping our sacred religion, culture, and traditions alive so as to pass them onto future generations. In the Zuni way no one is left behind.
15. What some advice you would give to future royalty?
Two pieces of advice that I have for future royalty are to always be yourself and always remember to smile. You always want to be the most authentic version of yourself, and you should always be proud of who you are. Always remember to smile, a simple smile can have such a positive impact on someone.