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TEMPERANCE — Mortuary science may seem an unlikely course of study for a beauty queen, but that’s the curriculum Miss Monroe County Breanna Davis plans to pursue in college.
Miss Davis, 20, took the Miss Monroe County title Aug. 17, besting a dozen contestants in the La-Z-Boy Center at Monroe County Community College, and taking the overall swimsuit and talent awards. She’ll vie in June for the Miss Michigan title in Muskegon.
Meanwhile, however, the Temperance resident and Bedford High School graduate is studying hard at MCCC, taking the prerequisite math and science courses she needs for admission to the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science, where she plans to enroll next September, earning a degree that will enable her to achieve her ambition of being a mortician.
Mortuary science wasn’t always her first choice, she said, but it is consistent with her interest in biology and human anatomy. She studied radiology for a semester at Mercy College in Toledo, but didn’t like it. “I told my mom I didn’t want to do it anymore. She told me I should do what I wanted,” Miss Davis recalled.
Dione Oerther, executive director of the Miss Monroe County Pageant, which is part of the Miss America Pageant system, said Ms. Davis will succeed in whatever she wants to do.
“She’s driven, motivated, personable, dedicated, and focused,” Ms. Oerther said. “She’s very disciplined. She’s a beautiful young lady. She’s very intelligent.”
Miss Davis said the Miss America Pageant is more than just a beauty contest, and she has benefited from participation. Along with the Miss Monroe County title came a $7,380 scholarship.
And the competition itself involved more than just looking good in a swimsuit, she said. She tap-danced and sang and delivered a five-minute speech.
“Without my pageant experience, I wouldn’t be very outgoing,” she said. “I’m grateful for it.”
In her speech, she said she spoke about what the Miss America Pageant organization meant to her and how it was relevant to her life.
She believes the interpersonal skills she has gained through the beauty and talent competition can be put to good use in a funeral home, where dealing with the bereaved is the norm. About returning to Monroe County eventually, she is uncertain. “It’s where my friends and family are, but I’ll have to go where the job is,” she said.