By Nance Ebert, Contributing Writer
Shrewsbury – A local pageant-winner is turning her love of competing into a Girl Scout project to inspire confidence and leadership among young women and girls.
Elliana Davis, a senior cosmetology student at Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School and senior class president, represented Miss Worcester at the National American Miss 2017 Pageant as a contestant for the All-American title.
During her freshman year, Davis started competing in pageants. She made it to the state level in the Miss Massachusetts Pageant, continuing on to California for the Nationals. She is also a dancer and placed second for this talent. She was crowned Miss Shrewsbury and most recently, in another pageant, was also crowned Miss Worcester.
“After I competed in my first pageant, I came back and fell completely in love with the experience. I made so many friends and felt so proud at how much I felt I had grown by the opportunity. I used to be pretty shy and when I did the pageant I had to get out of my comfort zone. They teach us a lot through interviewing, handling yourself across a large stage and more. Now, at school, if I need to make an announcement in the cafeteria to the students, I can do so quite confidently,” said Davis.
When she returned from her last pageant with her mother, placing third runner-up, she came up with a great idea for her Girl Scout Gold Award Project, called “Operation Spreading Confidence.” As part of the project, she created a book with collected drawings from girls depicting what makes them feel confident and also involved them in physical challenges like rock climbing.
Another component to the project includes a local pageant called the Shrewsbury Sweetheart Pageant held Feb. 12 at Oak Middle School. The pageant was the first of its kind for the town of Shrewsbury and focused on community service and female youth leadership.
“This Gold Award project is a community involvement award,” Davis said. “It takes about 80 hours to plan and involves fundraising and benefits a community. The local small business owners … were instrumental in helping to raise the money needed to make this event happen and I am so grateful for everyone’s help.”
Other Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts participated in the event, handing out programs, flowers and helping with other tasks.
Contestants from fifth through 12th grade were divided into three divisions with titles awarded for each.
“Each rehearsal is a workshop on confidence, courage and building good character, as the Girl Scout motto stands,” Davis noted prior to the event. “We’ve made a commercial for Shrewsbury Cable TV. We are happy to have the National American Miss Massachusetts Morgan Roacha, singer Scott Isbell and [YouTube star] Shaelyn Sibley as part of our program. I will be the emcee and I’m really excited and proud to see this project brought to the Shrewsbury community.”
Davis has committed to Framingham State University in the fall and hopes to major in accounting and business management with a minor in administration. She lives in Shrewsbury with her two younger brothers, Jared and Aydan, and her parents, Robert and Mieka.
Go to www.ShrewsburySweetheart.Space for more information.