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An Interview With Our Distinguished Senior: Eva Busch

In August, class of 2017's very own Eva Busch won the title of Distinguished Young woman of Oregon

Emma Alsept-Ellis, Food department writer

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An interview with SMA’s very own “Distinguished Young Woman of Oregon,” Eva Busch

“Distinguished Young Women is a unique program that combines the chance to win college scholarships with a program that offers Life Skills training to prepare young women for the world after high school.”

Our very own senior, in the class of 2017, Eva Busch captured the title of Distinguished Young Woman of Oregon. To win this award, she had to excel in interviewing skills, scholastics, talent performing and her fitness! She will go on to represent Oregon at the national competition in Mobile, Alabama this summer. She will be able to win both Cash Scholarships and College-Granted Scholarships, for her future education, and already has through her state program. I spoke with Eva about the pressures of preparing, what she has gained from competing, and what is ahead of her.

Can you briefly explain what Distinguished Young Women of Oregon is, and why you decided to get involved?

Eva: The Distinguished Young Women program is a national scholarship program for junior girls in high school. I decided to join this program because it’s an incredible scholarship opportunity that allows young women to perform on stage, execute an interview, and represent themselves and their community. They encourage young women to be their best selves, by being healthy, ambitious, involved, responsible, and scholarly.

The categories of scoring Scholastics, Interview, Talent, Fitness, and Self-Expression, all seem very challenging, was it difficult to prepare for all 5 simultaneously?

Eva: It was a little difficult to prepare for all of the categories, especially since I tend to procrastinate. For scholastics, I had to contact Tamara Alison multiple times so that I could get all of my records in on time. For the interview category, I spent time with multiple interview coaches to prepare for all of the difficult questions that they could have asked me. For talent, I definitely should have began preparing sooner because I ended up choreographing an aerial hoop routine the week before the competition. Fitness was a routine that we learned in the months before the competition and was especially difficult for me because it involved a lot of cardio.

What phase of scoring, besides the scholastic, do you think attending SMA helped you with?

Eva: St Mary’s definitely prepared me for the interview section. The class discussions that we participate in really helped to make me comfortable with my viewpoints on different issues, and it gives me the power to state my opinion, even if it’s something that could be controversial. Also in a lot of my classes I have been given the opportunity to discuss many controversial topics that are present in today’s society.

In preparing for the national pageant in Mobile, what kind of preparation do you think will be important? And is there more pressure to maintain your grades now that you are going to the highest level of competition?

Eva: I am definitely going to have to work on my cardio a lot so that I can do all of the fitness sections and still smile. Also, I will need to work on my talent for nationals as well. Going onto the highest level of competition definitely puts more pressure on the maintenance of my grades as the scholastics section is one of the highest scored sections of the program.

Do you think you gained life skills in competing for this?

Eva: I do think that I have gained life skills by creating in this organization. I have gained the ability to interview confidently in a group of adults and especially how to defend my views even if they’re not widely accepted. Also, I have gained quite a lot of stage confidence and the ability to perform in front of large groups of people without getting too nervous. The program also prepares young women for the financial requirements of attending college by providing many scholarships for participants. Distinguished Young Women also provides the participants with a “little sister” that they get to spend time with during their weeks before the competition. We get to be role models for these little girls, and encourage them to live a balanced life especially using the 5 points of the be your best self program (be healthy, be ambitious, be involved, be responsible, and be scholarly)

Would you recommend SMA Juniors try this competition next summer (and underclassmen when they are old enough?)

Eva: I really would recommend that Juniors and underclassmen compete in this program. Even if they do not win the state program, there are multiple southern colleges that will give those who participate in the state program full ride scholarships. Also this program forms incredible friendships that can last for a very long time and these girls really encourage each other to be the best they can be no matter what happens at the state competition. The Distinguished Young Women program has opened many doors for myself and all of the other girls participating, whether they be job opportunities, or connections to people who offer their help in any aspect of the competition.

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An Interview With Our Distinguished Senior: Eva Busch