Yesterday, Miss South Africa was crowned as the new Miss Universe for 2017. Miss Universe consists of around 90 women from all over the world who compete in various competitions, like the swimsuit competition, formal wear, and communication skills, where they are asked various questions on public health issues like social media and mental health, terrorism, social movements and so forth. Several judges score the women in these competitions, at their discretion, and choose the winner of Miss Universe. The winner of Miss Universe gets a one-year contract with one of the top modeling agencies in the world, security 24/7, an apartment in New York, and performs several community acts around the globe pertaining to public health issues. There are two requirements that are imperative to be in Miss Universe, besides the experience of walking in Runways etc., the two requirements are, to be between ages 19-27 and to not have kids or be married. Many controversies have risen with the requirements because many believe, that just like a teacher is required to have a degree to teach students or a counselor requires a masters to counsel someone, Miss Universe should require education so the crowning Miss Universe can fulfill her global duties of educating the world on public health issues at the best of her abilities. As we know, you can’t education someone on something you don’t know. Yesterday out of the 16 finalists only 2 had higher education, and when Steve Harvey asked of their higher education everyone was surprised as in to how a woman, who is pretty, who can walk on a runway, could also be an engineer. This is a perfect example that higher education is not a social norm yet, and Miss Universe only promotes the lack of education in young woman by not requiring education. Miss Universe shows us that a pretty, young woman doesn’t need education, their beauty will do it all.
Unfortunately, in this time of age, beauty will not do it all. Miss Universe realized that this controversy between the public and them in regards to the lack of an educational requirement was present and announced that they would extend the requirement of age one year, form 26 to 27, so the contestants could finish their degrees. This did very little, as more than half of undergraduate students take up to 6 years to graduate, leading us to age 24, and for a Ph.D or master’s, the average graduating age is 33 (What is The Average Age of A Graduate Student, 2016). Along with that, many of the contestants are recent high school graduates, who delay education just to participate in Miss Universe, and many of the times don’t pursue education afterwards. Many contestants start from a small age being in pageants and are fixed on the notion of competing in Miss Universe from a small age, dismissing higher education. Miss Universe extended the age requirement with the thought that giving access to education was enough, but access to education isn’t the issue, it is promotion of education; how to encourage young women to strive for higher education. Today we, women, are striving for social normality of women in higher education, not access. Miss Universe is a very strong motivator for several young woman out there, and Miss Universe should use this to their advantage to promote higher education in young woman, and show them that you can’t have beauty without the brains.