Former Miss Hockessin will represent the First State in upcoming Miss America pageant.
We sat down with Pike Creek’s Hillary May, Miss Delaware for 2019, to learn a little more about our state title holder.
Q: How has it been as 2019 Miss Hockessin and now as Miss Delaware?
A: Through both my time as Miss Hockessin and now Miss Delaware, it's has been a whirlwind of excitement. Being a rookie I never expected these outcomes -- though I'm beyond ecstatic they happened! My favorite appearance thus far was actually while I was Miss Hockessin. There is an amazing organization in Hockessin that I've been working with for a while now called Supporting KIDDS. It's the only grief center for kids in the state and it’s really where I found my place. What can you tell us about your platform/social impact statement?
Q Can you tell us about your social impact/platform initiative?
A: My social impact initiative is Let's Talk: Breaking the Stigma Around Mental Health. When I fought my battle with depression, I was lucky to have the support system I needed and that I knew about the resources available to me because of my previous work in the field. So many others, especially young people, are not so lucky and feel they have to navigate everything on their own. My hope for this year is to not only spread awareness about the resources available both for those struggling and allies of those struggling, but also to make conversations about these things more commonplace.
Q: How did you first become interested in the Miss America 2.0 competition?
A: More than anything I really missed being on stage. My roommate Autumn has done pageants for most of her life and I remember thinking how great it would be to be on stage again. The fact that Miss America is a not-for-profit, service oriented, scholarship organization was what initially free me to it. However, I have always been a performer, so the talent portion of Miss America is what really sealed the deal.
Q: What are your goals in life?
A: I’m working toward my PhD in Learning Sciences in the School of Education at the University of Delaware, so short-term that is my main focus. Long-term however, I really want to do everything I can to change the lives of low-income children. Be it through my work with education in low-income communities or through mental health supports and trauma interventions, I really want to get out into the community and make a real difference. Hopefully by starting my own not-for-profit.
Q: What advice would you offer a young woman hoping to compete?
A: As a rookie myself (if I can still say that) something I try to keep in mind is to just be yourself. You don't have to have done pageants forever to be successful in the Miss America Organization -- I'm living proof of that. So long as you go out on stage with the goal of being a better person when you leave than when you began, it's impossible for you to lose.