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Sierra Salandy poses in Browning lobby

Sierra Salandy

“Politics is so powerful and impactful. It affects me. It affected my ancestors. It affects all of us.”
Major: Political Science
Hometown: Murfeesboro, Tennessee
Involvement: Miss Black Tennessee US Ambassador, 2019-2020; intern, Tennessee General Assembly, January-May 2019; intern, U.S. Department of Energy, August-December 2018; intern, Clarksville law firm, summer of 2018; intern, Sen. Bob Corker, January-May 2017; worked with Cultivate the City in Washington, D.C.; intern, World Relief in Nashville, Summer 2016; Tennessee Intercollegiate State legislature, Student Government Association, Pre-Law Society, Conversation Partners, College Democrats, College Republicans, APSU 1000

Sierra Salandy’s last year in college typifies her entire time at Austin Peay.

Busy. And amazing.

She started off the semester as a legislative intern in the Tennessee General Assembly. And during her first week on Capitol Hill, she found out she’d won the crown of Miss Black Tennessee US Ambassador.

Salandy and Kristina Grant pose for photo in Cordell Hull building in Nashville.
Salandy, left, and Kristina Grant were two of nine APSU state capitol interns in 2019.

The political science senior will represent Tennessee in the Miss Black US Ambassador pageant July 29-Aug. 4 in Atlanta, Georgia.

“Finding out during orientation week of the internship, that moment in itself was so surreal,” Salandy, who graduated from Siegel High School in Murfreesboro, said. “My platform for the pageant is to promote more women to get involved with politics, law and government.”

In addition to finishing off her degree at Austin Peay, Salandy will serve in Sen. Brenda Gilmore’s office in Nashville until the end of the legislative session and she’ll travel around Tennessee in her role as Miss Black Tennessee US Ambassador.

Her political ambitions and pageant platform align nicely.


“I’m a huge advocate for women empowerment, and I want to be a role model for young women, especially young black women, because I love inspiring others, and I’m very passionate about community service, diversity and sisterhood,” Salandy said.

“Politics is so powerful and impactful. It affects me. It affected my ancestors. It affects all of us.”

She cherishes her experience at Austin Peay.

“I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve definitely learned a lot about politics. It’s challenged me in all the right ways.”

In addition to her other projects, Salandy is planning on announcing her presidential candidacy ... someday.