The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

The student news site of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas

Valley Ventana

Valley Ventana’s weekly Connections game: Week of April 22. Photo via Canva
Connections: Week of April 22
Valley Ventana, Staff • April 23, 2024
Wrestling coach Tim Clarkson was named the 5A Region IV Coach of the Year by his peers. Music by MorningLightMusic on YT
Wrestling coach named tops for Region IV 5A
April 22, 2024
Junior Sayers Allen poses for a photo at the golf region competition on April 17. Photo via SVHS Golf.
Swinging it into high gear
Grayson Cook, Staff Writer • April 19, 2024
In Comal school district, 22.0% of students are eligible to participate in the federal free and reduced price meal program, making the federal nutrition program a necessity. Photo by Annie Spratt via Unsplash.
Texas should adopt federal nutrition program
Bethany Mann, Editor-in-Chief • April 18, 2024
Olivia Fuentes will play beach volleyball at Tarleton University in the fall after signing on April 17.
Photo by Daniel Grant
Toe the sign
Alex Whelchel, Managing Editor • April 18, 2024

Miss America 2024 winner shows changing nature of competition

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The Miss America Competition started in 1921 after women’s roles began to change, giving them more power in society. It has since become a staple for trends and household discussion. Photo via Miss America website.

Although movies like “Miss Congeniality” and reality television shows like “Toddlers and Tiaras” make beauty pageants seem like a competition among bimbo airheads who all want to promote world peace and end world hunger, the Miss America competition is much more than that.

U.S. Air Force Second Lieutenant Madison Marsh, also known as Miss America 2024, became the first active member of the Armed Forces to win the title, and she is changing the face of the competition and the role of women altogether. She is just the beginning.

Marsh is a 2023 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy with a degree in physics and is now a student at the Harvard Medical School where she’s studying how to utilize artificial intelligence to detect pancreatic cancer – the same disease that her mother died of in 2018.

But her research isn’t the only work she is doing to fight pancreatic cancer. After her mom’s death, Marsh started the Whitney Marsh Foundation in 2019 as a senior in high school and has since raised over $230,000 to help fund research. 

While Marsh is a beautiful young woman, she did not win Miss America because of her looks but because of her extraordinary measures to make the world a better place. She is selfless and caring and illustrates the goal of the Miss America competition. 

Marsh represents the strength of women. She is a hard working career woman, but she did not have to sacrifice her femininity to prove she is competent. She can be intelligent and beautiful – and it shouldn’t ever have to be either/or.

This is what being Miss America is. The competition is not about just being pretty but about being a smart and caring person who truly puts others above themselves. The Miss America competition is about being a woman – and what a beautiful thing that is.

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