KSC alumna pursues Miss New Hampshire crown while serving as role model to Concord community
Campus Safety uniforms and pageant crowns! There she is, Keene State College graduate student and KSC parking coordinator by day; beauty queen by night.
Not only does Samantha Massahos work hard and study to become a school counselor, but she is also studying and working hard to become the next Miss New Hampshire.
Winning this local title representing Concord, N.H., allowed Samantha to compete for the title of Miss New Hampshire along with 26 other beautiful and talented young women from across the state.
“The Miss New Hampshire Scholarship Organization is a scholarship organization. Basically what it is, it’s a chance for young women to compete for scholarship so they can further their education” Massahos said.
“This is my third year at Miss New Hampshire, but I’ve been competing for four years. So far I’ve won around $20,000 in scholarship money since I started,” Massahos continued. Not only does the Miss NH Scholarship Organization provide thousands of young women across the United States with scholarship money to fund their education, it also provides many other positive changes.
“I’ve really learned a lot about myself throughout this program, and the most rewarding thing for me has been the about of confidence that I’ve gained,” said Massahos.
Amanda Warman, director for Campus Safety, has worked with Massahos for almost six years at KSC’s Department of Campus Safety. Warman also said how the pageants have lifted Massahos’ confidence.
“She’s really focused and goal oriented about it and you can see that, I’m really thrilled for her, the scholarship program has given her a lot of confidence and poise,” Warman said. Warman met Massahos when, as a freshman, she worked for Campus Safety as a student employee.
“She is meticulous, phenomenally bright, and one of those rare people that can learn something the first time,” she said.
“She’s very organized and professional and I think a lot of people, especially here in the office, were surprised especially for someone her age to be as professional and mature as she was and is.” Warman also explained how Massahos’ personality makes her easily likable.
“She’s energetic, organized, funny, and in some ways a little naïve. I never really had that sense of naiveté in my profession, so I’m definitely a little envious of that,” Warman said. She continued, “She’s also a great and effective communicator; she’ll tell you what’s on her mind but she’ll tell you in a way that’s direct but also very compassionate.”
Massahos’ local director and Miss New Hampshire Program Designer Michele Hanson has been with her every step of the way since she was crowned in October.
“She is really putting in her best effort, 110 percent into getting prepared. Every weekend since probably the first weekend in January we’ve been working on everything whether it’s interview, or shopping for the clothes she needs or preparing for her swimsuit competition, helping her feel more confident in that aspect. She’s working really, really hard,” Hanson said.
Winning a local title like Miss Capital Area, or winning the title of Miss New Hampshire, means that the young woman is a role model, and someone that a lot of people look up to.
For Hanson, Sam fits that role. “She is an excellent role model to young people everywhere, not just in Concord. She has younger sisters and she’s a big role model to them, I know how much they look up to her,” Hanson stated. Hanson continued, “In the capital area she has done all kinds of appearances in the downtown area with all the kids, and they just love seeing her, they come running and take pictures with her and give her hugs and want to try on her crown. She’s not disappointing us,” Hanson said.
One of Massahos’ twin sisters Brooke Walbridge also agrees. “She’s the best role model that I could have asked for,” Brook said. Samantha’s other sister, Ashley Walbridge, said, “She works so hard at what she does. She deserves to win Miss New Hampshire.”
Going out into the community isn’t the only thing that this beauty queen does.
Every contestant who participates in the program has to have a platform to dedicate her year of service to.
“My platform is Shout Out: Advocating for Survivors of Sexual Violence. I’m a survivor of sexual violence, so basically what I want to do is I want to be a voice for those people,” she said.
“I want to stand up, I want to share my story and I really just want to make the general public aware of this issue because it’s such a huge issue within our society,” Massahos said.
In order for Massahos to fulfill her goal of becoming the next Miss New Hampshire, she has to compete in the three day competition on April 26, 27, and 28.
Not only is her fate in her own hands, it is also in the hands of the public.
For the second year in a row people are encouraged to vote two different ways for their favorite contestant.
“The voting opened April 1, and it ends on April 25 at 11:50 p.m. You can go online and vote twice two different ways. You can go to www.missnh.com or you can go to the Miss New Hampshire Facebook page, you have to “like” the page first, you enter your email address and click on the contestant’s name that you wish to vote for.”
“From there you will receive an email from MissNH.com and all you do is copy and paste the link into your browser and your vote is cast,” Massahos said.
Massahos hopes to gain support from the KSC community and be voted into the top 12 at Miss NH.
Last year Massahos was one of the lucky two young women who were voted into the top 12.
She hopes to achieve this goal for the second time, and after that win the title of Miss New Hampshire 2012.
Warman explained how surprised she was when she learned about Massohos’ history within pageants because of the biases she held about pageants, “She has completely dispelled my misconceptions about what pageant contestants are and do, I have no worries about her being a success in the pageant and her life as a whole.”
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