Balancing school, Miss Vt. duties

Bethany Garrow competes at the Miss USA in Reno, Nevada. Garrow spending time with friends during CU homecoming.

For many girls, competing in the Miss USA Pageant is just a dream. But for one student here at Castleton, that dream became a reality.

Bethany Garrow, a junior nursing student, won the title of Miss Vermont USA for 2019, and ultimately competed for the title of Miss USA in Reno, Nevada on May 2, 2019. As her title comes to an end, I wanted to talk to her and learn more about what it’s like to be a local celebrity.

Q: Tell me about yourself, where you’re from, your major, etc.

A: I am from Rutland Town, Vermont and just started at Castleton this semester. I am pursuing a degree in nursing and I currently work as a third-generation dance teacher at Miss Jackie’s Studio of Dance. In my free time I love to, of course, relax. But I do enjoy being active – I will go to the gym or take my dogs on walks, and in the winter, I love to ski. I am never bored because I am always on the go!

Q: When did you start doing pageants?

A: I started doing pageants my senior year of high school.

Q: What got you interested in competing for Miss Vermont USA?

A: I have always been a person where I want to make a positive impact on someone’s life. I wanted to take it to the next level and reach out to a bigger crowd. I am very passionate about mental health and wellness, and I felt I had the voice and dedication to spread awareness for our youth.

Q: What was it like when you won the title?

A: I could not believe it because it was truly a dream come true. It’s hard to put into words how I felt because my mind went blank, I was in such shock. My family did not have a dry eye in the audience. It was a wonderful memory to share with them. I think my dance students were the most excited!

Q: Talk about the process of preparing for Miss USA.

A: I took a semester off from school to put all my focus in preparing for Miss USA, and to have the time to do all the events I wanted throughout Vermont. I took a lot of time journaling to dig deeper to find out who I am. This whole year, including the preparation, had been a year of personal growth. Winning has blessed me with many opportunities to grow and strengthen who I am as a person.

Q: What was it like competing for Miss USA, and what were some special moments?

A: Competing at Miss USA was an experience of a lifetime. I was on the go from 4 a.m. until 11 p.m. every day between events in Reno, photoshoots, fittings, rehearsals, and filming. I absolutely loved every bit of it all. I think many people have negative impressions on what happens at national pageants. The time I spent at Miss USA was spent with 50 intelligent, confident, successful and loving women. We all supported each other through the stressful times and celebrated the good times at Miss USA. It was a true sisterhood! My roommate was Savannah Wix, Miss Arizona USA. We bonded immediately and became lifelong friends. And I got to dance right next to T-Pain on national T.V.!

Q: How do you balance being a student at Castleton and being Miss Vermont?

A: It’s very difficult, I’m not going to lie! It takes a lot of stamina for sure. I take school seriously and I have to work very hard to get the grades I get. I have to be very organized, but leave time to spend with friends, family, my boyfriend, and of course my two dogs Buddy and Maverick.

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