A new queen has been crowned
A new queen has been crowned.
Now, 23-year-old animal lover Danielle Grant is ready to take on the universe.
Grant, who succeeds Yasmine Cook as Miss Universe Bahamas 2018, was crowned on Sunday evening. She was one of 12 women vying for the crown.
With her first test behind her, Grant will train for three months before she travels to Bangkok, Thailand to represent The Bahamas on the big stage.
“There will be lots of training mentally and physically,” Grant said.
“It takes a lot to wear the crown and to whom much is given, much is expected of. So, there’s a lot of eyes and there’s a lot of attention, so it’s up to me now to live up to that expectation and to really go beyond that. It’s really just up to me to make Bahamians proud. It’s all about representation, and I really feel as though we can bring home the Miss Universe Crown this year.”
While Bahamians have represented well at the international pageant over the years, The Bahamas has not yet found the winning formula. But Grant said she hopes to change the status quo.
“I feel like it takes determination,” the 5-foot-9 Queen’s College graduate said.
“I believe in manifestation… If it’s something that you really do want, then you will work hard for it and you will get that. Regardless of what noise there is in the background, you will work hard for that. If it is meant for you then it will be for you, and I do feel that it is for me and my people.
“I am a queen of the people. I am here for them,” she continued. “My job is to make sure that I am the best representation for them when I go off and to show the world that The Bahamas is just this beautiful nation of not just sun, sand and sea, but the people and all of the resources and intelligence that we have here.”
Reflecting on her victory, Grant, who recently received her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Johnson and Wales, said it was a “surreal moment”.
“It’s one thing to say that you were dreaming of this moment for the past 12 weeks, but when they actually call your name, I was just like, ‘Oh my God. They said Danielle, that’s me’.
“I was very, very ecstatic. It’s been something that I was dreaming about since I was 12 years old. It’s one of my dreams actualized, and it’s very amazing for me.”
Grant said she could think of no better way to start this new chapter in her life, than to begin as the queen.
“I’m just so happy to be representing my country and my nation, especially when I go off to Miss Universe to Thailand in December,” she said. “I really just want to push my platform of animal advocacy, because that is really a passion for me. I currently have six animals, all of which are rescues and are fostered dogs from the Bahamas Alliance for Animal Rights and Kindness (BARK).
“My initiative is to spread awareness about potcakes, and I want to train them to become service animals to take into rehabilitation centers, hospitals and homes for the elderly.”
As for life after the crown, Grant, who has already been accepted to Johnson and Wales’ master’s program, said she wants to continue to pursue higher education.
Ultimately, she wants to work in the fashion industry.
“I love to dress up, so to be a head buyer for John Bull or to even have my own fashion line would be right up my alley,” she added.
Adding a special message for Bahamian youth, Grant said, “I just want to let young people know that we hold ourselves back from 90 percent of things in life. We are our worst enemy and worst bully. Once you can conquer your fears, you can truly accomplish anything that you want to. Push past that comfort barrier then you can truly succeed.
“Also, don’t do anything halfway. If you’re going to do anything in life, do it to the best of your abilities; don’t do anything halfway.”
Grant won an all-expense-paid trip to the Miss Universe pageant; a four-year scholarship to attend Midwestern State University; a wardrobe; a cash prize; jewelry; air travel; personal coaching and media training; as well as make-up, skin and hair care products.
Education: Benedict College, BA in Mass Communications