Independence’s 2022 Homecoming Court


Seniors Naren Kanugula and Xavier White pose on the football field after being named homecoming royalty at halftime of the Homecoming football game. Photo courtesy of Suhani Dixit, 10.

On Friday, October 14, Independence Homecoming court members strode across the football field and were commended as representatives of the school and their respective classes.

Halftime of the homecoming football game last Friday hosted the recognition of the entire elected Homecoming court, as well as the announcement of the two senior winners. After all of the appointed court members were acknowledged, seniors Xavier White and Naren Kanugula were crowned as Homecoming royalty.

“It was a surprise to hear I had won,” expressed White, “I felt thankful to the people and my friends of Independence that put their vote toward me.”

Electing students to Homecoming court is a classic high school tradition that allows for students to celebrate peers who positively reflect their school’s values. Earlier in the month, Independence students were encouraged to vote for two students to represent their graduating class.

Elected to freshmen court were Tyler Elgas, Grady McFarland, Ayoush Moza and Jillian Santoni; the sophomore representatives included Kinza Huque, Rakshit Ragav Vijayakumar and Anvitha Tumati; the junior court consisted of Taylor Graham, Neel Harigopal and Dylan Suarez; and Stella Forbes, Charlie Gully, Naren Kanugula, Colin Scherer, Madhu Surresh, Brynn Tarring, Marielle Taylor and Xavier White made up the senior court.

Santoni said, “I was so excited when I found out I was voted for Homecoming court by so many of my peers and friends and was honored to participate in all of the court activities.”

Beginning last year, Loudoun County Public Schools eliminated gendered labels for Homecoming Court winners. Following the passing of Policy 8040, all LCPS high schools were required to eliminate gendered activities if they did not serve educational purposes. White and Kanugula were deemed homecoming “royalty” as opposed to gendered terms such as “king” or “queen.” 

In addition to walking across the football field, court members were celebrated at the Homecoming pep rally during the school day on Friday, at the Homecoming parade which ran through the Brambleton Town Center on Friday evening and at the Homecoming dance on Saturday night.

The election of Homecoming court is a fun tradition to recognize students from each grade, and the title of class representative is definitely worth taking pride in.

“My favorite part about being on Homecoming court was walking out on the football field during halftime with my parents, while my friends were watching in the stands,” stated senior court member Stella Forbes, “I was honored to represent my school and class.”