Mikayla Holmgren is a twenty-two-year-old woman with Down Syndrome who won two awards at a Miss USA pageant and seeks to show the world another side of her condition.
The young woman was absolutely exhilarated by her unexpected success as she not only competed in the Miss Minnesota pageant but she even won two awards at the competition. Even now, she gets excited whenever she remembers the feeling of her achievement.
Holmgren spoke to interviewers from Buzzfeed News, explaining to them about the shock and tears of happiness she shed. She opened up during her celebratory dinner during the night on Sunday. Mikayla stressed on the sudden jump from being a pageant with special needs to the most talked-about pageant in the whole world, describing it as crazy.
Her achievements didn’t stop there, as the twenty-two-year-old not only won the Spirit of Miss USA prize but she even went down in history as the first person with Down syndrome to have competed in the pageant from the whole country. This information was presented by the Miss Universe Organization.
Of course, it was far from easy for the young woman, as she elaborated on how much work she had to do in order to prepare herself. She spoke about all the shopping trips with her mother, practicing mock interviews and trying on different combinations of makeup to find the perfect match for herself.
Her talents don’t end with her beauty. Mikayla also shared that she’s been a dancer ever since she was just six years of age. She loves making performances in front of people as the stage fills her body and mind with strength and energy. She told interviewers that dancing is a good outlet for her personal expression. She believes in herself and her lovely talent and wants to continue improving and showing people how far she can reach with her hard-work and dedication.
Holmgren is also a university student at Bethel University. She’s a part of its Inclusive Learning and Development program and is going to graduate next year. Mikayla takes part in a number of different activities as she lives on campus like being an intern at the institution’s child care facility and being an ambassador for a nonprofit organization called Best Buddies, which aims to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities create and maintain healthy relationships while also working on their general life skills.
Mikayla’s pageant ambitions really began to become clear for her after her triumph at Minnesota Miss Amazing in 2015, a beauty pageant for disabled women. She wanted a more serious challenge and when she received a notification letter from Miss Minnesota, she immediately felt dead set to become part of it. She spoke about how she had to work pretty hard to convince her mother to allow her to apply for the competition.