Miss Universe Pageant contestants will begin gathering next week in Las Vegas, Nevada, to begin preparations for the 2015 Miss Universe Pageant. The event will mark the first live broadcast from the pageant’s new home on the FOX Network, where it will be televised December 20. Reigning Miss Universe Paulina Vega will be on hand to crown the new winner live on stage at Planet Hollywood.
While many consider pageants to be a stepping stone for contestants to enter the field of modeling, it is a lesser-known fact that many pageant titleholders credit their success in pageantry to previous experience with modeling schools. There are many modeling schools nationwide, but two national chains, Barbizon and John Casablancas, are credited with turning out pageant winners in addition to successful actors and models. With pageants becoming more prevalent and participation in pageants on the rise, some modeling schools could see an increase in students interested in learning the skills needed to be successful in both modeling and pageants.
Let’s take a look at some rising stars and familiar faces who have found success in modeling and pageantry after attending classes at modeling schools.
Miss USA 2008 Crystal Stewart attended the Barbizon modeling school in Houston, Texas prior to winning her state title of Miss Texas USA on her 5th attempt. Stewart is known as the 2nd consecutive Miss USA titleholder (following Rachel Smith in 2007) to stumble and fall during the Miss Universe evening gown competition. She is now credited as a Barbizon modeling instructor, and won the title Instructor of the Year.
Internet sensation Dytto is a young model, actress and dancer who won the 2014 Georgia Perfect Teen Pageant. This former John Casablancas modeling student is now signed in Los Angeles. She has been spotted in numerous television appearances and has created a very strong social media following.
Barbizon of San Francisco graduate Lisette Diaz is an actress, model, and pageant titleholder who represented the United States in the Miss World 2005 Pageant. She was the third Hispanic contestant to be crowned Miss US World. Prior to winning her national title, she was first runner-up at the Miss California USA Pageant.
Once referred to by Donald Trump as his “favorite Miss Universe ever,” Barbizon Santo Domingo grad Amelia Vega has modeled all over the world, appearing in many magazines and beauty campaigns. The first delegate from the Dominican Republic to win the Miss Universe title in 2003. Vega went on to model for Cover Girl cosmetics. She was also the cover model for the only book ever published by the Miss Universe Organization, entitled Universal Beauty.
Miss America 2010 Caressa Cameron graduated from Barbizon Virginia in 2002, seven years prior to winning her Miss Virginia title. In an interview with Pageantry Magazine Cameron said of her modeling training, “It’s so much more than just a modeling program, and that’s something a lot of people don’t know…it was an opportunity that gave me life skills that are absolutely unparalleled.” Her teen years have been described as difficult, as she was bullied in school at a young age. She is now described as a valued employee of the Barbizon education department, where she has “excelled as a teacher of the program and as an inspirational speaker to high school and middle school teens.”
Reigning Miss LA Teen Icon Marcy Flores credits her Barbizon training for giving her the tools to portray the best version of herself on stage. Flores recently walked the red carpet at the Daytime Emmy Awards and the celebrity Go Red runway at Style Fashion Week in Los Angeles. She was also crowned Miss Golden State’s Perfect Teen.
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