Former 'Real Wolrd' star to visit campus tonight

Melissa Howard, cast member of MTV's "Real World New Orleans" is scheduled to speak at 7:30 p.m. today in the Student Center Ballroom.

Howard, who moved to Hollywood from the Tampa Bay, Fla. area last year, will speak and answer questions about her experience on "The Real World" as well as her love of art.

After her lecture, Howard will also announce winners of the University Program Board's annual React to Art competition taking place from noon to 5 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom.

UPB Director of Traditions Micah Hudson said he wanted to bring Howard to Ball State after an episode of "The Real World" that focused on Howard's love of painting.

Hudson said he feels Howard would be "someone that anyone on campus could relate to."

Howard's outspoken attitude on issues such as race, sexuality and her father's suspected drinking problem placed her in the spotlight of most of the MTV reality show's 22-episode season.

According to the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, Howard has worked as a production assistant for the Jamie Foxx Show, embarked on a 15-college speaking tour and enrolled in a comedy improvisational course since she moved to California.

Entrants in the React to Art competition will be judged by a combination of students, faculty and the public -- Hudson said he considers it important for students to be judged by their peers as well as professors.

First place in each category carries a $50 prize along with the ability for students to display their art in the Student Center. Second and third place winners receive $25 and $10, respectively.


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