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Ellsworth teen gaining self confidence through pageant

Rosemari (Rosie) Urbaniak, a 16-year-old from Ellsworth, will compete in the National American Miss Wisconsin Junior Teen in Middleton July 15 and 15. Submitted photo

Gaining self confidence and speaking in front of people are just a couple of the skills a local teenager hopes to gain by competing as a state finalist for the National American Miss Pageant.

Rosemari (Rosie) Urbaniak, a 16-year-old from Ellsworth, will compete as a state finalist July 14 and 15 in Middleton for a chance to be National American Miss Wisconsin Junior Teen and go on to compete at the national level.

Urbaniak said she has never competed in a pageant before but saw this as an opportunity to help others who may need encouragement that life can get better.

"I have decided to compete in this pageant to be a role model for other girls out there who deal with depression, anxiety and other mental health issues," Urbaniak said. "I want to show them that no matter what life throws your way you can always push through and overcome anything that stands in your way as long as you keep your head up and keep pushing through. I want other girls to know that mental health issues and a difficult life don't define who you are as a person but can be used to help you become the best version of yourself."

Urbaniak said she wants to be able to give hope for all those who think they are alone in their problems.

"I also want all the girls out there [to know] that there is someone that believes in them and thinks that they can do anything they put their mind to and that things can happen for them, just like it did for me," Urbaniak said. "All they have to do [is] try their best and keep on pushing through."

The journey to the decision to compete started when Urbaniak received a card in the mail inviting her to interview in Eau Claire for a chance to compete in the NAM pageant. She said she found out the only way to receive a mailed invitation to compete is to be on the A honor roll, have a previous contestant refer you or have someone from the community nominate you. The day after her interview in Eau Claire, Urbaniak said she received an email telling her she had made it to the state competition.

Celina Roberson, Urbaniak's mother, said she sees the pageant as having many benefits for her daughter.

"This pageant is so much more than looks and glam, it looks at the girls as a whole and volunteering is part of the scoring," Roberson said. "It will benefit her by helping her with public speaking and confidence in herself. It will also help empower her to finally realize that no matter what obstacles may be in her way she can overcome anything by putting her mind to it and believing in herself."

To prepare for the competition, Urbaniak went to a pageant preparation in Eau Claire for 2.5 hours.

"There they taught us how to walk for the pageant, posture to use while speaking with the judges, and how to make a lot of eye contact, tons of smiling, and how to be more comfortable speaking in front of lots of people," Urbaniak said. "We also learned some tips for answering the judges' questions."

Urbaniak hopes to gain skills she can carry with her throughout her lifetime.

"I think that I will gain more leadership, how to better communicate with people, how to overcome fears, and to be there for people who need it," Urbaniak said. "I want to show people that anything is possible if you believe in yourself."

Roberson agrees that her daughter will see many benefits from this pageant.

"She will gain poise, self confidence, communication skills and learn how important it is to give back to her community," Roberson said.

In her spare time Urbaniak likes dancing, singing, fishing, rollerblading, ice skating, coloring, drawing, playing flute, playing in multiple sports (soccer, volleyball, track and softball), and horseback riding. She also finds time to volunteer at Zion Covenant Church.

Urbaniak said her future is undecided, but she has options.

"I want to go college either for becoming a veterinarian or something in the medical field," Urbaniak said. "I want to have my own family someday. But at this time I don't know what my future holds, I am just taking this day by day. No one knows where the future will bring them."

Urbaniak and Roberson are looking forward to the July competition but are still looking for people to help sponsor them on this journey.

"I am still in need of sponsors for the competition that will take place July 14 and 15, 2018, in Middleton, Wisconsin," Urbaniak said. "If you would like to help me achieve my goal please donate at www.gofundme.com/5if3c0w."

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