From Ken costumes to confident performances, here’s what happened at Mr. Trailblazer

Tyler Quincy, a junior applied sociology major from West Jordan, was crowned as Mr. Trailblazer Feb. 7. All of the contestants portrayed their unique talents and skills to show off their personality through singing, playing instruments, dancing, and more. Miki Akiyama | Sun News Daily

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Among the variety of college events at Utah Tech University, Mr. Trailblazer stands out by bringing students together in a supportive atmosphere.

During this annual event, 11 students from diverse backgrounds came together to showcase their personalities, talents and charm in hopes of ultimately winning the title of Mr. Trailblazer.

After a night full of loud cheers and applause from the audience, the contestants’ scores were tallied up, and this year’s Mr. Trailblazer was announced. The title went to Tyler Quincy, a junior sociology major from West Jordan.

Quincy said he is happy to carry on this Utah Tech legacy and help the next Mr. Trailblazer grow.

“This has been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Quincy said.

The night began with an opening performance where all of the contestants danced and lip-synced to “I’m Just Ken” by Ryan Gosling from the 2023 “Barbie” movie. All of the contestants were dressed up in their Ken costumes.

Following the performance, the contestants were introduced on stage and answered one question about themselves. Then, each contestant performed an individual talent for the audience.

The contestant’s talents ranged from dancing and singing to reading poetry and playing instruments.

The 2024 Mr. Trailblazer event came to an end after each contestant was escorted onto the stage by a person of their choosing who then answered a question about them. Afterward, all of the students gathered together on the stage and waited for the results from the judges.

Quincy received the title of Mr. Trailblazer after his reenactment of “Freak the Freak Out” from a scene on the Nickelodeon show “Victorious.”

“It’s going to be hard, but getting out of your comfort zone is like the best thing that you can do for yourself and your mental health,” Quincy said. “I never imagined I would be on stage with a wig sewn to a beanie and taking it off and having my Utah Tech gear underneath.”

Along with the new title of Mr. Trailblazer, Quincy was also awarded a prize of $500. Quincy said that receiving this new title felt unreal.

Quincy was not the only contestant who received a title and cash award. McKinley Vaughn, a senior criminal justice major from South Jordan, was awarded a prize of $300 and was announced as first runner-up. Additionally, Asher Anderson, a junior marketing major from Mesa, Arizona, was awarded a prize of $100 and was announced second runner-up.

Vaughn shared that at first, he was shy and didn’t want to talk but later gained confidence from a group of contestants who loved and supported him. He then advised students who are unsure about competing next year to be 100% themselves, and that would get them far.

After the event, Anderson shared that he was talked into competing by a friend as a joke but was grateful because he was able to meet a community of students.

“Because everyone is scared out of their mind, it’s just fun because you have camaraderie, so everyone is friends,” Anderson said.

Each of the winning contestants shared that what made this experience worth it was the other contestants who helped them along the way.

Quincy said, “Connecting with all of the other guys and having those connections with them helped me realize that if these guys are confident, I am going to be confident too.”