As our magazine comes to an end, Kasie Smith, president and publisher, and Jennifer Reeves, sales director, want to take a look back at all of the wonderful memories the Miss America Organization, the Miss America's Outstanding Teen Organization, and all of our readers have given them through the nine years of publication.
Attending college may be the norm, but organizations like Miss America and Miss America’s Outstanding Teen are working to make sure debt doesn’t come standard with a degree. Thankfully, many colleges and universities across the country are ready to provide in-kind scholarships to national contestants and titleholders.
Many MAOTeen contestants are on the verge of commencing the college experience, and after the 2013 competition, award winners are stepping a little lighter knowing college expenses will be less of a burden. Miss Rhode Island’s Outstanding Teen Heather Shen was awarded $3,000 in combined cash scholarships, in addition to four-year renewable, full-tuition scholarships to Auburn University, Hollins University, and Troy University. Heather said she understands the gravity of college loans; she has an older sister. But now, she can help her parents and her education. “I know how expensive it can be,” Heather said, “and to be offered so much is heart-warming to me.”
Many former titleholders are already reaping the benefits of in-kind scholarships, and they returned to MAOTeen 2013 to tell the tale. Miss Ohio’s Outstanding Teen 2010 Cecili Weber attends Hollins University—where full tuition, half tuition, and $25,000 scholarships were awarded to MAOTeen contestants this year. The university appealed to Cecili because of its high rate of graduates finding jobs soon after graduation. The monetary incentive played a big role, too.
For former teens like Miss Viriginia's Outstanding Teen 2012 Andolyn Medina, scholarships are a chance to give parents recognition and thanks for the support they provided through the pageant journey. "When I was told about scholarships at Hollins, I thought, here's finally my chance to pay my parents back for everything they've put in for me to be a part of this organization," Andolyn said. “Everyone wants to graduate debt-free, and because of MAOTeen and Hollins, I’ll be able to.”
The benefit of in-kind scholarships isn’t just for award recipients. Universities are also at an advantage with MAO and MAOTeen contestants among the student body. “These girls are the best of all the students in the United States,” said Brenda Campbell, Troy University director of graduate studies. “These are the kind of students we want.” MAOTeen builds a program that expects a high caliber of young women, and colleges recognize that and respond by allotting scholarship dollars. MAOTeen invites new colleges to take part in their annual college fair, or to attend pageant competitions so they can see for themselves the level of maturity, academic excellence, and community service contestants are capable of. After that, it doesn’t take much convincing.
There are indeed many opportunities to advance academically. And with the help of MAO and MAOTeen, more young women can go to college and graduate without so much debt. Still, no matter the cost, education is the most valuable asset for young women to have. “No one can take your education away,” Brenda said. “Wealth may come and go, but academics is everything.”
Written by: Erika Rose is fourpoints magazine's staff writer.
Whether you are trying to grow your pageant numbers or just diversify the pool, board members and volunteers have their work cut out for them. Contestant recruitment may be the most successful way to infuse your organization with fresh faces, not to mention new interest in the Miss America Organization. But what is contestant recruitment, and how could you make it work for your pageant? Read on.
The Miss America and Miss America’s Outstanding Teen organizations awarded $7,000 and $5,000 respectively, in preliminary competition scholarships in 2013. Contestants performed their talents, showcased their health and fitness, and proved their poise and stateliness. And for their representation of each phase of competition, judges’ panels scored young women who now carry on in their academic studies with the promise of funding. But performances in Atlantic City and Orlando were far from improvised, and those contestants who were awarded are willing to share their secrets for preliminary scholarship success.
Florida's Jules Burt isn't an ordinary painter: She has an affinity for "glamour queens." And be they members of the homecoming court or Miss America herself, Jules is glamming up caricatures for contestants across the country.
Miss America's Outstanding Teen Leah Sykes was on the road in November. Here is a glimpse into her month.
'Tis the season to be busy, and Miss America 2014 Nina Davuluri is in the midst of a packed schedule of holiday events!
On Tuesday, November 26, the holiday festivities continued as Nina had the honor of flipping the magical switch at the Tree Lighting Celebration at the beautiful New York Palace Hotel. The majestic celebration symbolized the start of the holiday season as the lights transformed the Palace Hotel into a royal event in New York City!
Wednesday, Nina joined Gretchen Carlson, Miss America 1989 and host of The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson. Nina was featured on "The Power Panel," where she discussed a variety of current events and promoted the Miss America Scholarship Program.
Nina celebrated then Thanksgiving on Thursday, as she rode on a patriotic float in the 87th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!
Source: Miss America Organization
Miss America 2014 Nina Davuluri joined the New York City Rescue Mission Monday, where she served as the honorary host of its annual Great Thanksgiving Banquet.
The stakes are high in Washington, D.C., as are the expectations for professionalism at a level standing as resolute as the pillars of the Capitol. There’s no time to ease into a year of service for titleholders representing the nation's capital, and if the Miss District of Columbia Scholarship Organization Executive Director Teri Galvez has anything to do with it, her young women will be ready.