On top of the world

Published 12:59 am Wednesday, May 16, 2007

By By Adrienne McKenzie
Poarch Band of Creek Indians member Megan Young exhibited her vast knowledge of Native American culture, awarding her the title of Miss Indian World 2007-2008 April 28.
PCI held a reception recognizing Young and her achievements Thursday.
At the reception, Young said that she went to the pageant with the hopes of informing other Native American communities throughout the United States about PCI.
"My main concern was making sure we got noticed and recognized," she said. "We're still proud of who we are. We're still striving for the future. I wanted people to know who we are."
Tribal Chairman Buford L. Rolin was thrilled to hear that Young was appointed as Miss Indian World.
"The Tribe is just really honored," Rolin said. "We are pleased to have her represent Indian communities throughout the nation but especially PCI. We are really pleased that she was selected and we wish her the best of luck."
According to Alex Alvarez, PCI Cultural Education Coordinator, Miss Indian World is a high-status pageant. He helped Young prepare for the pageant, meeting with her almost every week since December. There were 22 contestants at the pageant from tribes across both the United States and Canada.
"She is the first southeastern Tribal lady to win this," Alvarez said. "I'm ecstatic. It was a part of me that won, too, because we've been working on this since December. Whenever she won I came running out of the bleachers on to the floor. This is the most prestigious Indian princess pageant."
Young had to study many new things about the Tribe for the pageant. Not only did Young win the overall competition, she was also awarded Best Essay and Best Personal Interview.
"There were a lot of different issues she learned," Alvarez said. "The essay included a lot of history. It was very well written and she put a lot of thought in it. The traditional talent intertwined her knowledge of history, her beautiful voice and her dancing. The program is centered around culture. She had really prepared herself for the pageant."
Young said her two favorite parts of the pageant was socializing with other contestants and the talent portion of the competition.
"My favorite part was getting to meet the girls and also the talent presentation part because I wanted to represent the traditional part and also where we come from," she said.
Over the next year, Young will travel extensively as Miss Indian World.
"I will be traveling a lot over the year," she said. "I get to go to Hawaii to a Pow Wow. I won a cruise as Miss Indian World but I don't know where I'm going yet. I will probably get to go to Canada and I will also get to do a red carpet event in Hollywood."
Young currently attends Lurleen B. Wallace Community College in Andalusia. She is working as a pharmacy technician. She plans to continue her studies at Troy University, studying human resource management.
"I enjoy meeting people and in that job I would have the opportunity to utilize my communication and organization skills," Young said.
For more information on Miss Indian World, visit gatheringofnations.com

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