Whenever I tell someone that I compete in pageants, I get responses and questions that vary from, “Oh! Like the movie Miss Congeniality,” to, “Are the girls mean?” Well, I am here to show the real side of pageantry. Being involved in the Miss America Organization since the age of 17 has changed my life for the better. I’m here to clear up what it is like to compete against strong, talented women of prestige. I’ve heard people say that pageants are degrading to women. However, competing has instilled the confidence in me to change the world around me. It has opened my eyes to be more involved in my community and to find my value. A myth that I have had to clear up several times is that this is strictly just a beauty pageant, focusing on looks and looks alone, but I emphasis the fact that I compete in a scholarship organization. The MAO is the nation’s leading advocate for women’s education. And it is also the largest provider of scholarship assistance to young women in the United States. Each year, the organization awards millions of dollars in scholarship to make it possible for students like me to go to college. I am beyond thankful for the financial support I have received. Another myth is that none of the girls that compete with each other get along, and that backstage, everyone fights. This one is probably the farthest from the truth. I have met some of my best friends from competing in pageants. We support, love and encourage each other. We build each other up, not tear each other down with petty comments and mean attitudes. The reality of it is, only one girl is going to win and walk away with a crown. But whether or not I win, I walk away with lifelong friends.
Miss Eagle 2016