Lets be ‘Franks’: 2022 Miss Black EIU


Ashanti Thomas

Jaedah Franks, a sophomore biology major, wins Miss Black EIU 2022 at the celebration of the 50th Anniversary Scholarship Pageant on Saturday night.

Madelyn Kidd, News Editor

The 2022 Miss Black EIU Jaedah Franks plans to open her own OB-GYN clinics in the future, with the first being an affordable clinic for women in Chicago who can’t afford most health care options.

After graduating from Eastern, Franks plans to get her medical degree and become an OB-GYN and open a practice in Chicago.

“I want to have a non-profit mentoring group for young women and young girls, and my first practice will be towards women that can’t afford affordable health care,” Franks said.

Franks’ dream to be an OB-GYN began when her mother was pregnant with her brother, and the gynecologist let Franks help during ultrasounds.

“When I was little when my mom was pregnant with my little brother, I was just so fascinated with how is there a baby growing in you, how are you going to get it out,” Franks said. “And she ended up taking me to her doctor’s appointments, and the gynecologist would actually let me do our ultrasounds.”

Franks’ mom encouraged her daughter’s interest in the OB-GYN field, and a mentoring program helped Franks decide on her higher education path. 

“I didn’t get to see the birth, but [Franks’ mom] started showing me videos and showing me kind of what that career field does,” Franks said. “And in high school I was in a mentoring group, three C’s mentoring group. It was a TRIO program, and I feel like they really contribute to who I am today. If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t have gone to many colleges to learn about college like college was always an idea. But I feel like they really bought it out of me, so I think giving back to my community by having a mentor group targeted to young women will kind of give me a feeling of giving back.”

On Saturday night, Franks was crowned as the 2022 Miss Black EIU during the 50th anniversary of the Miss Black EIU pageant.

“It feels great,” Franks said. “It feels like I’m living in a dream. I don’t think I woke up.”

Franks was proud and excited of many aspects of the pageant throughout Saturday night.

“I’m proud to see my pageant sisters and all of us actually perform our pieces,” Franks said. “And although I did not physically see it when I was in the back getting ready, I heard it and it sounds 10 times better than it did in practice.”

Overall, Franks enjoyed getting to meet the other contestants from the pageant and each had their own creative expression piece on stage.

“My favorite part was making relationships with the girls I’ve never seen,” Franks said. “I’ve never seen them before until the pageant, but my personal favorite part with my pieces has to be my creative expression. It took a lot for me to tell that story. I haven’t told that story to anyone until that night, but I feel like I overcame it and turned my nervous energy into positive energy.”

Franks is also on the EIU Cheer Team as a main base, but is also versatile in what position she can be.

“I’ve been cheering since I was five, so cheering has been something that I’ve always done,” Franks said. “Picking a college, cheer was high on my radar because I know I want to do it. But coming to Eastern, it is a different sense of cheer because of where I come from, so I feel like it was great because I get to meet new people or have different experiences from what I’m used to.”

Franks also enjoys getting to tumble because it makes her feel “like a feather in the air.”


Madelyn Kidd can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].