As a pageant girl competing in my first pageant soon, homework is watching tons and tons of film from prior ones. June 1st was exciting because it was the preliminary show of the Miss USA pageant and a link was provided to stream it live.
There’s nothing quite like the experience of watching something in real time, especially a competition that interests you and engages your full attention. I’m not sure if I was more nervous for the girls walking live in a show that could change their lives, or more excited for them to be a part of something so grand.
Honestly, before deciding to compete in pageants, I didn’t see the big deal in women “prancing” on stage being judged for their “beauty”. It’s only after I realized what big of a bridge it could be to achieving bigger dreams that I saw the beauty in it.
While many stereotype these girls to be vain and superficial, most are your small town girl with big dreams. In school you’re told over and over to make good use of your assets, resources, and time, and I believe this is exactly what these girls are doing. They’re known to be fit, healthy, and beautiful. They’re confident of who they are, command a room with their presence, and brighten it with their voice. They’re eloquent and good citizens. They seek to make a difference in the lives of others. Pageants are the perfect place to gain a platform to grow that voice or simply make the difference they seek. They use their wit, intellect, and beauty to get them there making perfect use of the advice given. While looks are pleasing to the eye and the primary reason most spectators watch, the judges have a bigger task. They are to carefully discern who is the best fit as the titleholder.
The titleholder must be a good role model and citizen, they should be graceful and gracious, well poised and kind, eloquent and strong expressing beliefs. Their job for the next year is to serve as models and model citizens while advocating on the behalf of many different charities and organizations. Beauty pageants go far beyond looks. It is to combine both inner and outer beauty. To discover the best fit, judges interview with the girls asking any question they choose to gain a better understanding of who they are. The purpose of the interview is to gather a detailed snapshot inside. The next portions for grading are swimsuit and evening wear walk. This is not to discuss who has the best abs and the longest legs but, instead, the most confidence, grace and poise on stage. Which girl can command a room by being strong and confident yet be inviting and charming? Which girl can make you turn your head and want to be her friend? The last portion before calculating a cumulative score is by a final onstage question. This is where most of the nerves usually kick in as the girls pick a random question from a jar that can range from politics to sports and they are given thirty seconds to answer. The question shows how quickly the girls can think and how creative they are when tastefully giving their opinion. The judges look at composure as well as eloquence and intelligence used when the answer is delivered.
It’s a shame beauty pageants get such bad reputations but it’s beautiful to see girls who fight through adversity anyways at a chance to make their dreams come true. The Miss USA final show is aired live for millions across the world to see, giving the girls a huge platform as well a huge resume builder.
It takes true strength and discipline to fight day in and day out, to compete in front of the world at a chance to show others that their beauty is not limited to the outside. These are not supermodels, just your everyday girls who had a dream and trained for it.
Jobs come in all different forms and it’s time that pageant girls were actually applauded for their confidence to chase their dreams like others. It may look easy to strut across stage beautifully but it indeed takes hard work. These girls trained months, some, even years and years for this, it’s wonderful to see women from so many different backgrounds work together while still competing for a once in a lifetime opportunity.