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Education Major is not your average beauty queen

Sarah Callahan, a freshman elementary education major at Florida Atlantic University, was crowned Miss Southwest Florida in February, and will go on to compete in the Miss Florida Pageant in July. Callahan hopes to use her newly won title to help bring awareness to her philanthropic platform of children’s illiteracy.

Callahan is no stranger to a challenge, and has already begun on the FAU campus to fight children’s illiteracy with her involvement with the “Get Fit Program,” which helps students get placed in local school systems to gain the knowledge and experience necessary to become strong teachers and leaders.

Callahan has assisted at Lauderdale Lakes Middle School, and soon will be helping at Davie Elementary School.

“In the Miss America program, they’re all about community service. That’s what I love about the system,” Callahan said. She hopes encourage FAU students to form a team to walk for the MiracleWalk/Run5-K in May, as well as host book drives and donate books for local schools. Callahan also plans to become an advocate for Miss America’s charitable partner, the Children’s Miracle Network.

Contestants in the Miss Southwest pageant were judged in an interview session, as well as talent and evening gown competitions. Callahan will continue on to compete against 59 contestants for the title of Miss Florida, a preliminary competition to the Miss America pageant in July in St. Petersburg. Callahan will be performing a monologue from Cinderella as her talent.

“I’ve learned a lot about myself through this whole process. I really hope to gain more self confidence and interview skills, as well as help raise awareness for children’s illiteracy,” she said.”I want to bring different aspect to the table and I know I can do that. I’m nervous, but I just have to let my personality shine through.”

Callahan admitted that she cried when she won her title.

“I thought for sure I hadn’t won and I was staring over by my dad, nodding my head, when they finally announced my name. I was so happy and shocked,” she said.

When Callahan isn’t competing in pageants you can find her working out at home to stay in shape or working as one of the many blonde Disney characters for theme-party planner at Kids Fiesta in Pembroke Pines.



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