Miss Winnipesaukee Scholarship Program
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UNH Senior Crowned Miss NH

From The New Hampshire by Heather Deegan

Emily Huges accepting crown
Although the title of Miss New Hampshire may sound overwhelming to some, Emily Hughes is adjusting to it very well.

"This is my fifth year in the program, so I've had time to prepare for the responsibilities that come with the title," she said.

Emily, 22, of Gilmanton, took home the title of Miss New Hampshire this Saturday at a pageant held at Pinkerton Academy, beating out 17 other local pageant winners from around New Hampshire. Emily has been competing for this title for five years now, and has spent her time going to appearances, practicing public speaking and rehearsing dance moves for her talent competition.

Throughout her five years as a contestant, she has adjusted to these responsibilities, and has had time to learn how to handle the pressures of being Miss New Hampshire.

Emily Huges dancing
She will graduate from the University of New Hampshire with a master's in elementary education in just a couple of weeks, but her plans to seek a teaching job must be put aside for a while in order to prepare for the upcoming Miss America Pageant. "I won't walk at graduation, but I am graduating this year," Emily points out. She only has a couple more requirements to complete before earning her masters.

Although Emily has been doing an internship at Bedford Memorial, she recently turned down a teaching job to take on the role of Miss New Hampshire.

"I can't balance both, and I'd like to be able to focus all of my attention on teaching in my first year," Emily explains. For now, she will put teaching on hold in order to focus on her character education-based platform. In order to promote her program, she will need to raise money to help support her efforts towards enhancing local schools.

Emily Hughes in swimsuit
She currently works with a program called Community of Caring, and plans to go into different schools to do read-alouds and become more involved with the children. Emily was named Miss Winnipesaukee last year, and has earned around $60,000 in awards, most of which will go toward paying off college debt at UNH.

Along with the title of Miss New Hampshire came $15,000 and many responsibilities. Her job for the next year will be to represent the scholarship program and to compete in the Miss America Pageant that is expected to take place in Las Vegas sometime next winter.

Emily won the overall interview competition this past Saturday in Pinkerton, proving that she can best represent New Hampshire for the title of Miss America. This year's Miss America Pageant will include a reality television series that will focus on all the contestants for the crown. emily will be appearing on the series which will air on Country Music Television.

The pageant this year will also be a bit different, with judges choosing eight of the finalists and the viewing audience choosing seven of the finalists much like American Idol. "New Hampshire isn't known for breeding Top 10 finalists," Emily states. "This is my opportunity to change that."