ST. GEORGE — Thanks to a lot of hard work, self-discipline and some pretty glamorous dresses, one Dixie State University student is seeing her dreams come true in the “Miss America” pageant, scheduled to air Sept. 13, 7 p.m. on ABC; her own family, friends and community can help this Southern Utahn make it to the live competition through social media.
Krissia Beatty, a senior majoring in communication at DSU and the reigning “Miss Utah,” is in Atlantic City, New Jersey, competing in the “Miss America” pageant preliminaries, starting Tuesday. To help vote Beatty into the finals, simply create a Facebook post or a Twitter tweet that includes the word Utah and the hashtag #missamericavote each day through Thursday.
Having served as Miss Utah since winning the crown June 20, Beatty started enjoying the experience even before she stepped foot — clad in stiletto heels — on the national stage.
“It has been surreal, but it has been the best experience of my life,” she said before leaving for the competition. “My favorite part has been meeting people from every standing in life.”
Beatty received a celebratory send-off in St. George Aug. 22 during which she modeled her gowns and enjoyed the support of family, friends and community in the Gardner Center Ballroom on the DSU campus.
Read and see more: Road to Miss America: Miss Utah gets hometown send-off
The first Miss Utah ever from Southern Utah, Beatty is breaking the mold in a variety of ways. A self-proclaimed tomboy, Beatty confesses she had to take make-up lessons to learn the ins and outs of competing in pageants. She first decided to compete in “Miss Utah’s Outstanding Teen,” the sister program to “Miss Utah,” as a way to spend time with friends.
“I just entered for fun,” Beatty said. “My friends were doing it, I had a dress and I can play a piano so I decided to try it.”
After competing in the teen pageant for two years, she went on to win Miss Washington County in 2011 and Miss Dixie in 2012, ranking in the top 10 and placing as the fourth runner-up respectively at the “Miss Utah” completion those years.
With a desire to win the “Miss Utah” title, Beatty entered the “Miss Nebo” pageant, a competition open to experienced contestants living anywhere in Utah, in 2014. Now that she has won the “Miss Utah” pageant, the crown is proving to be a good fit for the Desert Hills graduate.
“This is everything I want for my life,” she said. “I want to be dedicated to serving. I want to help others. I want to give hope. This is the best way I know how to do this.”
An active Dixie State University student, Beatty’s involvement at the school has helped prepare her for the national stage. Through serving with student government as the public events chair, leading campus tours as a student ambassador and singing and dancing with Raging Red, she has honed her leadership, public speaking and performance skills.
A classically trained pianist, Beatty started performing before she entered the pageant world. The skill serves her well as a contestant, as she tickles the ivories during the talent portion of the competition.
When it comes to her platform, Beatty moves her focus to wellness. A competitive swimmer, practicing a healthy lifestyle has long been important to Beatty. Her platform, “Live Well — Change the Focus,” cooperates with Intermountain Healthcare’s Live Well program and encourages people to eat well, feel well, move well and be well.
“I am so proud to be from Dixie,” she said. “The support I have received is amazing. I hope to do well and make everyone in Utah proud.”
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