May 27, 2010

Shining Stars

May 27, 2010 By Tiffany Green The Cullman Times

CULLMAN — The 2011 Junior Miss Program will be Saturday, June 5 at 7 p.m. at the Betty Leeth Haynes Theater on the campus of Wallace State Community College.

America's Junior Miss (AJM) is the oldest and largest scholarship program for high school seniors in the nation.

“The program exists to recognize and reward young women who have distinguished themselves at school and in their community with educational scholarships,” said Patty Grier, local chair.

This year, seven girls representing six local schools will participate.

“AJM encourages each participant to complete her college education, serve her community, and become a leader, thereby becoming a role model for others,” Grier said.

 The Be Your Best Self (BYBS) program, an integral part of the Junior Miss experience promotes these principles: Be healthy (Be physically fit and drug free), Be involved, (Serve your community) Be studious (Stay in school), Be ambitious (Set and achieve goals), and Be responsible (Live by moral and ethical principles). The AJM mission, along with awarding scholarships is to help participants develop life skills and to encourage positive values that will lead them to impact the lives of other young people.

Since the return of the local program in 1999 over $40,000 has been awarded to thirty-eight outstanding girls in Cullman County Grier said.

“The Junior Miss program looking for the well-rounded girl; one who has been preparing for this all her life without even knowing it,” Grier said.

The judging is done in five categories; Scholarship 20 percent; Interview 20 percent; talent 25 percent; Self-Expression 15 percent; and Fitness 15 percent.

Tuition scholarships to be used at the college of the contestant's choice will be given to the overall winner, first runner-up, second runner-up, scholastic winner, talent winner, self-expression winner, fitness winner, spirit of Junior Miss winner, and Be Your Best Self essay winner.

The winner of this program will represent Cullman County at Alabama’s Junior Miss to be held in Montgomery on January 14-15, 2011.

Entertainment for the evening include Kathryn Schaefers Neese, the 2008 Cullman County's Junior Miss and choreographer for the program for the last three years, Joyah Laney Pettus, 1995 Cullman County Junior  Miss, Jordan Johnson, 2010 Cullman County Jr. Miss and Yurika Chiba, 2010's Cullman County's Junior Miss First runner-up and talent winner.

Grier said any girl interested in participating next year should visit the AJM website at www.ajm.org or contact the her at 734-8184.

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