Brittany Monico, junior elementary education major, is an active leader at NSU. She won Miss Broward County and competed for the title of Miss Florida with NSU’s sponsorship.
I left for St. Petersburg to compete for the Miss Florida pageant on July 3. I packed my Honda to the max with necessities and I am not a light packer. I jammed to the radio the whole way and the closer I got to it, the more excited I was. It felt good to finally know the pageant was close because I had worked so hard for it.
My heart raced when I saw other contestants. I had competed in pageants before, but not at this level. In the Miss America system every girl brought something to the table. In that sense, it made me nervous knowing I was competing against the best of the best. Not to mention, I had so many supporters: my family, friends
The only phase of competition I was not nervous about was my talent. I have been a competitive dancer for 15 years and performing on stage is something I love. I performed a jazz acro routine to a Rob Thomas hit, “This is how a heart breaks”. Aside from the talent contest, I had other activities: a panel interview, an on-stage interview, the bathing suit and the gown contests.
Although I did not win the Miss Florida pageant, I learned a lot and grew from the experience. At first, I felt a bit upset, but then realized that as the youngest candidate, I had gotten very far for my first time. Meanwhile, there were other girls who competed several times and still had not placed. I learned to be proud of my efforts.
This summer, I also served as a senior camp counselor specialist, teaching cheer and dance to kids. I worked 7-hour shifts daily. It definitely wore me out at times and after work all I wanted to do was rest — and it wasn’t easy with Miss Florida around the corner.
As Miss Broward County, I strongly enforce my platform, H.O.P.E (Helping Out People Everywhere). It is a volunteering-based platform focusing on getting children involved in their communities.
This summer, I also volunteered with the American Red Cross, the Special Olympics, Children’s Miracle Network and others. My favorite event was the National Night Out Against Crime in Margate, where I spoke briefly. For the first time, I had the opportunity to sit in an army tank. It was really exciting.
My second favorite event was with the American Red Cross supporting our troops. They had a beautiful ceremony and I was honored to be a part of it; to build a strong and caring community, volunteering is essential. If we did not have volunteers to lend a helping hand, many of our great organizations would not exist.
I am involved on campus through the Leadership Roundtable Scholars, the Honors Program and the cheerleading team. Juggling all of this with school is the hardest part, but I prioritize my classes over other activities since education is extremely important to me. I am an active leader around campus, so keep an eye out for me.