How I have been preparing myself for the national pageant is always making sure I do my self affirmations in the morning just to always start my day off positive. But throughout the day I am always working on my talent, pageant walk, or my speech. I am so thankful for all of my trainers that are helping me work through this before the pageant.
PBD: While striving for success, how you maintain a sense of authenticity?
I maintain a sense of authenticity and stay true to myself while striving for success by remembering my upbringing. I am the youngest of six raised by a single mother in Baltimore city. I have no choice but to remain humble, grateful and appreciative of my present while remembering my past. The crown and the sash does not make me because I make the crown and sash. I choose to lead respectfully, honestly, loyally and humbly not just for the pageant but in life.
PBD: As a local dance community leader, how do you inspire others and plan to showcase leadership at the national pageant?
I can recall a time when I was elementary school, Ms. Keisha asked for all of the dancers to sell raffle tickets where the highest seller would win a solo for the upcoming show. Out of all of my dance sisters, I was the only one to bring in my ticket sales a week before the raffle deadline. When my dance sisters saw that I was bringing my money in and started having privates to learn my solo, they eagerly began selling to win a solo as well. I will always remember how proud I felt to not only win a solo but to encourage my dance sisters to fight and push for what they wanted and believed in. That year, was my first year to ever have a solo and because of my diligence and hard work that was the beginning of so many more opportunities. With this life lesson, I will continue to use tenacity and love to reign as Ms. Black Maryland Talented Teen and hopefully, Ms. Black USA Talented Teen 2023.
PBD: How do you motivate yourself during times of self-doubt or setback
Keeping a positive mindset is an uphill journey for me at times. I have to consistently use prayer, meditation, mindfulness activities and affirmations to keep me focus and stay in a positive headspace. I believe with God at the center of my life, I can do anything I put my mind to. With my praying mother, she encourages me to stay focused and lean on my religious upbringing to find solace in the high expectations of life.
PBD: How do you strike a balance between pursuing your passion for dance and excelling in academics?
I balance my passion for dance and excelling academically by planning. My dance teacher purchased all of her students planners one year and helped us plan our days and master the time we are given. But don’t get me wrong, I have been taught this very early on in life but, it is still challenging for me. There were time I did not plan properly and had an oversight in a commitment for dance because I forgot to update my planner for the events at school. But planning is essential for everything in life. I still use my planner and do not leave home without it.
PBD: In today’s digital era, social media plays a significant role in the lives of teenagers. How do you navigate social media responsibly, and what advice would you give to your peers on handling its influence positively?
I navigate social media responsibly by not entertaining or posting things that conflict with my morals and values. I choose to follow people who promote positive and meaningful content. I post positive and meaningful content. My social platform is a safe space for people to come for motivation and encouragement. My advice to my peers on how they can positively influence on social media is to remind them that social media can be a reality or fantasy. People use social media to construct whatever life they choose to portray. I would remind them to stay positive and remove or block anyone or anything that interferes with your positive space.
PBD: Winning the national pageant would be a significant achievement. How do you envision using the platform and title to make a positive impact in your community and beyond,
As I prepare myself to step into the role of Miss USA Talented Teen I envision using my platform and title to inform and keep raising awareness of being bullied or victimized. I want to be as open and honest about my struggles, insecurities and fears that I dealt with during my time of being bullied. I want them to know that they are not alone and it doesn’t matter what position ir title you may have, never be afraid to use your voice and never allow fear to silence you or make you feel inadequate. As I take my reign I don’t want anyone to suffer in silence.
PBD: You often go viral for your beautiful dance photos and videos along with the dance company you are apart of…what inspiring thought you will like to share with your dance sisters and young girls who are watching you?
An inspiring thought I would like to share is…. you’re a masterpiece, and your gift will always make room for you. Be who you’re proudly, and learn to celebrate your uniqueness. Dance out your own story!