Meet the Miss Dowagiac contestants: Jamie O’Brien and Jessica Schoff

DOWAGIAC — The next group of local royalty will be crowed this Saturday, during the 79th annual Miss Dowagiac Scholarship Pageant.

Ten young women will take the Dowagiac Middle School Performing Arts Center stage that evening, where they will be looking for a spot on the 2018 Miss Dowagiac Court of Honor — and competing for $8,500 worth of college scholarship money.

The pageant — which will feature the theme of “Fearless” — will be from 7 to 9 p.m. at the middle school auditorium, 57072 Riverside Drive. Tickets cost $15, and may be purchased from the Greater Dowagiac Chamber of Commerce office, located inside the historic downtown train depot, at 200 Depot Drive.

Over the next week, the Dowagiac Daily News will feature the profiles of this year’s contestants. Up next are contestants 7 and 8:

Jamie O’BrienContestant 7

Name: Jamie O’Brien

Age: 17

Height: 5 feet 6 inches

Eye color: Blue

Parents: Mother- Krissi and Larry O’Brien

Siblings: Sister, Daphne O’Brien

Schools attending: Dowagiac Union High School, Southwestern Michigan College

Grade: 12th

School activities: Past, track, volleyball and Band; current, Educational Talent Search, student senate, treasurer of Rotary Interact Club and varsity tennis

Outside activities: Secretary of North Red Hill 4-H club

Interests and hobbies: Ceramics, leather, basket weaving, cake decorating, string art, container gardens, tin punch, scrap booking, tennis, visiting the nursing home, hanging out with my family, and spending time with friends

Awards and honors: Bravo award for cake decorating, Best of Show for gift wrapping, Best of Show for leather, Student of the Month freshman year, Varsity “D” freshman year, Student Performance of Excellence in English freshman year, perfect attendance sophomore year, most improved player in tennis junior year, third varsity “D” award junior year, academic excellence junior year, best team supporter junior year, high honors senior year.

Three words to describe me: Assertive, outgoing and strong willed

Ambitions and plans after graduation: I am enrolled in the early college program, so that means I don’t get my diploma until I graduate from Southwestern Michigan College with my associate’s degree. I will graduate from SMC in 2019. After I get my associate’s degree, I plan on staying at SMC and going through their RN program so I can stay local and save money. Finally, once I finish that, I plan on finding a job within a hospital and going back to school to finish out my studies, and to get my BSN. My career goal is to become a gerontologist.

Greatest accomplishments: Getting accepted into the Early College Program, and getting accepted to Southwestern Michigan College.

Why did you decide to compete for the title of Miss Dowagiac 2018? I thought that competing for the title would be lots of fun. Just going through the experience with the girls I grew up with is what I’m looking forward to. Aside from the experience itself, public speaking is one of my weaknesses. So, with it being my senior year of high school, I decided to push myself out of my comfort zone to go out for this pageant. The experience is something I will forever look back on, and be thankful I did.

Jessica Schoff

Contestant 8

Name: Jessica Schoff

Age: 17

Height: 5 feet 5 inches

Eye color: Brown

Parents: Paul and Sheri Schoff

Schools attending: Dowagiac Union High and the Van Buren Technology Center.

Grade: 12th

School activities: I’ve played soccer since I was 5 up until freshman year; my junior year, I threw for the track team.

Outside activities: I work at Hale’s Hardware, and participate in 4-H for the North Red Hill Club.

Interest and hobbies: I like to travel.

Awards and honors: I have won multiple trophies and ribbons in either soccer, cheer, softball and 4-H. I’m also on the honor roll.

Three words to describe me: Energetic, compassionate and reliable

Ambitions and plans after graduation: My plan after high school is to attend Southwestern Michigan College for two years to take my remedial classes. Then I’d like to attend Grand Valley University. I’d like to pursue a career in physical therapy.

Greatest accomplishments: Climbing the second tallest mountain in Arkansas with my dad.

Why did you decide to compete for the title of Miss Dowagiac 2018? I decided to compete for the title of Miss Dowagiac 2018 because it’s a way to express myself, and to have more confidence.

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