June 25, 2022

‘It’s Gonna Be May’: Alum’s Meme Celebrates a Decade

A decade ago, UMW alumna Kianna Davis ’13 created the famous ‘It’s Gonna Be May’ meme, which has since become a cultural phenomenon. Here, she shows off her April 2012 calendar from her junior year, which includes Mary Washington events such as Mortar Board and the Leadership Awards. Photo courtesy of Kianna Davis.

A decade ago, UMW alumna Kianna Davis ’13 created the famous ‘It’s Gonna Be May’ meme, which has since become a cultural phenomenon. Here, she shows off her April 2012 calendar from her junior year, which includes Mary Washington events such as Mortar Board and the Leadership Awards. Photo courtesy of Kianna Davis.

University of Mary Washington alumna Kianna Davis ’13 was in her Westmoreland Hall second-floor room, a year away from graduation, when she created her first-ever meme.

Within 24 hours, the image she shared of a young, fresh-faced Justin Timberlake – emblazoned with a now famous play on the song lyrics to It’s Gonna Be Me – had earned tens of thousands of social media interactions. Even her friends, family and fellow Eagles were sharing it, unaware that Davis had made it.

“I had been planning my busy April calendar and posted it as a joke to my friends,” said Davis, who majored in business at UMW and helped plan concerts and other campus events through Giant Productions and the University Programming Board. Still a dedicated fan of Timberlake’s former boy band, *NSYNC, she “had no idea what the meme would become.” Read more.