For generations, Mary Poppins has been teaching kids everywhere that you can do anything with a positive attitude. Maybe it’s just cleaning your room, like the Banks’ kids, but with a ‘spoonful of sugar’ you can accomplish it, and with a smile.
Think of today’s featured Miss Nebraska contestant like a 2014 version of Miss Poppins…
Miss Sugar Valley, Tosha Skinner
The college junior from Hay Springs, Nebraska is trying to make life a little sweeter for people across the state, especially young women and children. Tosha has dubbed her mission BEAUTY, representing the words Believe, Embrace, Accept, Transform, You.
“I personally have struggled with Body Image Disorder and the numerous side effects most of my life,” Tosha told me recently. “When people realize they are not alone, it is easier to deal with. I want to spread the word in order to not only make it known, but also to help people that are suffering from any form of Body Image Disorder.” Tosha not only speaks at events about her platform, she has also created a blog to share her story and spread awareness.
Tosha first got involved in the Miss Nebraska system as a Little Sister, a program partnering young girls with the Miss Nebraska contestants. These kiddos get to dress up and escort their Big Sisters during the competition itself, perform on stage during the pageant, and form friendships with the young women who are so often role models to them.
“It gave me a chance to be up on stage, which is one of my passions,” said Tosha. “But as I have gotten older, it has helped me grow into the woman I am today. I attribute pageants to so much; my ability to speak in public, my strong leadership skills and my passion for service are just a few.”
One of Tosha’s new friends she made as Miss Sugar Valley
Tosha credits the Miss America organization for helping women everywhere find their voices and passions, bettering themselves along the way.
“I love being surrounded by women who are just as passionate and dedicated as I am!” said Tosha. “And people should care about Miss Nebraska because the women who are competing are our future leaders in our country. Every woman competing will make a difference, whether it’s through politics, business, philanthropy or anything else they set their mind to.”
DETERMINED, PERSISTENT, BLESSED
Anyone who thinks beauty queens just walk around waving their hands and smiling all day need only look at Tosha’s daily schedule. The full-time student is involved in five organizations on campus (holding office in four of them), holds an internship at Talent Plus, Inc, and is paying for college by herself. Still, she wants more; she wants the job of Miss Nebraska.
“I am ready to take on this job,” said Tosha. “Being Miss Nebraska is about more than competing at Miss America and appearances, it’s a full-time job. It will allow me to take the negative stigma away from body image and allow people to understand that everyone’s bodies are different. But loving yourself inside and out is what it takes.”
And a spoonful of sugar never hurts.
Connect with Miss Sugar Valley, Tosha Skinner
The Miss Nebraska pageant takes place June 5-7 in North Platte, Nebraska. For more information, visit the Miss Nebraska website.