Every other week, The Talon interviews a member of the Oklahoma Christian community, a Newsmaker, to answer questions about their role on campus.
On Feb. 22, The Talon interviewed Mikayla McKinzie, this year’s executive director of Spring Sing.
Why/How did you become Spring Sing director? What did that process entail?
“Growing up in and around campus, Spring Sing was something I looked forward to every year. Once freshman year rolled around, I got to fulfill my dreams of not only being in a show, but directing one. Moving forward to junior year, I learned a lot about myself during Freshman Fanfare in 2020. I am grateful for the growth that has happened since that experience because I believe it has enhanced my abilities to lead as Executive Director of Spring Sing 2023.
“What made me a strong candidate is my drive, passion and determination. When I set my mind to something, I ensure it gets done. This has happened over the course of my college career through various experiences and officer positions. Also, with my music and theater experience, I believed I would be a great extra set of ears and eyes to not only the club directors, but the host and band directors as well.
“All of this to say, I wanted to finish out my college career with something as special to my life as Spring Sing is. The process involved filling out an application and a proposal of themes, why I would be a good choice as Executive Director, etc.”
What does your job as Spring Sing director entail?
“My job as Spring Sing Executive Director has been executing a vision for the biggest annual event OC has to offer. From creating the theme to making decisions about the show, it has been wonderful to see my vision come to life over the past few months. I am very proud of the students, executive committee, hosts, band, tech, club directors, clubs, etc. involved.
“However, a lot of my job has been “damage control.” As much as I hate it when issues arise, I have enjoyed helping directors find solutions and ensure the best possible experience for them.”
What are your biggest challenges as director?
“My biggest challenge as director is making sure everything is running smoothly. It has been difficult to do that during the day, but I have been available to attend practices and assist directors when needed in the afternoons and evenings.”
How did the theme for this year’s Spring Sing come up? What was the purpose and idea behind it?
“Just My Imagination” is all about growing up, reminiscing about our dreams and childhood. I connected Spring Sing with “growing up” because of my own experience growing up and coming to Spring Sing and looking forward to being involved in it.
“Our wonderful hosts are singing songs about dreams, clouds and imagination. The themes our clubs have chosen take us down the memory lanes of our childhood with toy characters, childhood heroes and various creatures. This show allows clubs to think outside of the box, get creative and use their imagination.”
With all you’re doing currently (student teaching, club, etc.), how do you balance it with Spring Sing?
“Basically, my schedule for these past two months has been student teaching, Spring Sing and sleep. There is not much I can do outside of that, but I have been able to enjoy time with my club, my friends and have a little time for myself.
“After school, I normally come to the office and help get things done and ready for meetings, etc. I have been blessed with Amanda, Abby and Emma, who have been able to do things, send emails and prepare things while I am away from my phone due to teaching.”
What is your favorite part about Spring Sing and what are you most looking forward to?
“As one of OC’s biggest annual events, it is a chance to bring not only the students together, but the community as well. Hundreds of people come to see Spring Sing every year, and it is such a beneficial experience for all parties involved: it attracts numerous incoming and potential students, it helps remind current students of one of the many reasons why they chose OC and it creates bonds between the club members and hosts with the countless practice hours.
“In my personal opinion and experience, Spring Sing is special. I have no doubt it means the same to students and alumni; from the beginning of Spring Sing 55 years ago to now, it has changed the dynamic of OC forever. It is a staple to a student’s time here and something everyone continues to carry with them.”