Pom squadron practice Monday at Omaha Central was something but schedule for senior Jordan Somers Oh; there was copiousness of pom-shaking and high leg kicks. But partway during, Nick Cannon, rapper, actor and swarm of the reality TV show America's Got Talent, strolled into the high school mission her name.
A crew rolled out a red carpet and set up a silver dais labeled Halo Awards. Down the carpet came four young women, all draining beauty pageant sashes and tiaras. Somer, looking astounded, began wiping tears from her eyes. You do wonderful things with these amazing ladies, said Cannon as cameras filmed the occasion for Nickelodeon's Teen Nick Halo Awards.
Somer, 16, is one of four teens starting around the country recognized for fulfilling the awards' subject of Helping and Leading Others. A one-hour special featuring the teens will air in December.
In 2007, Somer, then an eighth-grader, started the Miss Amazing Pageant for girls and women with physical and mental disabilities. The pageant became an annual event and now includes ages 5 to 35.
Somer, who has been participating in talent and beauty pageants since she was 3, wanted to give the young women the chance to do what she had done.