News

The New Gen Ed Lottery System, Explained

News

Armed Individuals Sighted in Harvard Square Arraigned

News

Harvard Students Form Coalition Supporting Slave Photo Lawsuit's Demands

News

Police Apprehend Armed Man and Woman in Central Square

News

107 Faculty Called for Review of Tenure Procedures in Letter to Dean Gay

Student Wins Pageant, Resigns for Med. School

By Robert J. Coolbrith

Here she is, Miss America... well then, where is she?

That's what some may have been left wondering after Catherine K. Huang '98, a former Miss Teen Delaware USA, resigned as Miss Boston only days after winning the title on March 23. By resigning the title, Huang gave up a chance at competing for the title of Miss America.

"She is the total package. There is no doubt in my mind that Catherine would have been the next Miss Massachusetts--she could even have been the next Miss America," said Miss Boston pageant organizer, Darcie A. Fisher.

While some notable pageant winners have resigned from their titles under scandalous circumstances, Huang's reasons were entirely practical--she wants to attend medical school.

"I was really very excited to win the title and it was heartbreaking to give it up. I could have waited to apply to medical school, but school has always been my priority," said Huang.

The organizers of the Miss Boston pageant expected that Huang would win the Miss Massachusetts pageant this June. In that case, she would have to spend the summer in Massachusetts preparing to complete in the Miss America pageant in September.

Huang, a biology concentrator living in Currier House, said she had already planned to do research in molecular biology at the University of Michigan while working on medical school applications over the summer.

While pageant organizers were disappointed that she would not be able to continue in her role as Miss Boston, Huang says that they respected her commitment to her academic career.

"This was an unusual situation, one which had only come up one other time in Massachusetts. We were all a little disappointed, but were understanding of her situation," Fisher said.

Although she will not continue as Miss Boston, Huang said she has not ruled out participating in other pageants in the future.

As Miss Teen Delaware, Huang said she enjoyed being able to act as a role model for other high school students and said she sees pageants as a forum for community service.

"As Miss Teen Delaware USA, I realized how much one could do with a title--it's what you make of it," Huang said.

She emphasized that she was excited by the prospect of devoting a year to service in the Boston area and around the state.

It was only the likelihood of having to give up the summer to prepare for the Miss America pageant that forced her to give up the title, Huang said.

"I don't know why it takes two months to prepare for the Miss America pageant. I think contestants should be judged for who they are," she added.

While Fisher agreed that Huang, a classically trained pianist, is already a very polished contestant, she nonetheless emphasized the importance of preparing for the Miss America pageant.

According to Fisher, months of preparation played a key role in the success of Marcia M. Turner '97 at the Miss America pageant last year. Turner made it into the final round of ten contestants in that pageant, winning $18,000 in scholarships along the way.

The preparation for the Miss America pageant typically involves a regiment of physical training, practice for the interview and talent portions of the pageant, and meticulous wardrobe preparation, according to Fisher.

Although Huang, who began modeling at the age of 12 and competing in pageants at 15, said she would not commit herself to this type of preparation, she said she is committed to the ideals of the pageant system.

Huang said she feels that in a world dominated by male role models, the pageant system provides a resource for young women to find female role models.

"While pageants may have been exploitive of women in the past, pageants today reflect upon modern women--women who are ambitious, intelligent and have career goals," Huang said.

Huang added that she has found nothing but support at Harvard for her activity in pageants.

She said that some of her friends have gained a better understanding of pageants by meeting her. Huang added that she wants people to look beyond the stereotypes of women who enter pageants.

"I would encourage women who are ambitious and intelligent to enter pageants. It's unfortunate that women who are really ambitious and intelligent feel they might be stereotyped for doing so."Roger L. MichelCATHERINE K. HUANG '98 decided to give back her Miss Boston title.

As Miss Teen Delaware, Huang said she enjoyed being able to act as a role model for other high school students and said she sees pageants as a forum for community service.

"As Miss Teen Delaware USA, I realized how much one could do with a title--it's what you make of it," Huang said.

She emphasized that she was excited by the prospect of devoting a year to service in the Boston area and around the state.

It was only the likelihood of having to give up the summer to prepare for the Miss America pageant that forced her to give up the title, Huang said.

"I don't know why it takes two months to prepare for the Miss America pageant. I think contestants should be judged for who they are," she added.

While Fisher agreed that Huang, a classically trained pianist, is already a very polished contestant, she nonetheless emphasized the importance of preparing for the Miss America pageant.

According to Fisher, months of preparation played a key role in the success of Marcia M. Turner '97 at the Miss America pageant last year. Turner made it into the final round of ten contestants in that pageant, winning $18,000 in scholarships along the way.

The preparation for the Miss America pageant typically involves a regiment of physical training, practice for the interview and talent portions of the pageant, and meticulous wardrobe preparation, according to Fisher.

Although Huang, who began modeling at the age of 12 and competing in pageants at 15, said she would not commit herself to this type of preparation, she said she is committed to the ideals of the pageant system.

Huang said she feels that in a world dominated by male role models, the pageant system provides a resource for young women to find female role models.

"While pageants may have been exploitive of women in the past, pageants today reflect upon modern women--women who are ambitious, intelligent and have career goals," Huang said.

Huang added that she has found nothing but support at Harvard for her activity in pageants.

She said that some of her friends have gained a better understanding of pageants by meeting her. Huang added that she wants people to look beyond the stereotypes of women who enter pageants.

"I would encourage women who are ambitious and intelligent to enter pageants. It's unfortunate that women who are really ambitious and intelligent feel they might be stereotyped for doing so."Roger L. MichelCATHERINE K. HUANG '98 decided to give back her Miss Boston title.

Want to keep up with breaking news? Subscribe to our email newsletter.

Tags