Miss South Carolina Rachel Wyatt became Miss America 2017 runner up on Sunday night as Miss Arkansas Savvy Shields won the title. Although she missed the crown, she received a $15,000 scholarship and will step into the shoes of Miss America 2017 in case Shields is unable to fulfill her duties.
During her interview, the Miss America 2017 runner up waxed eloquent when she was asked whether there is an immigration problem in the country.
“I myself am a quarter Japanese and my great-grandfather is an immigrant. I think America really is a nation built on immigrants,” she said as quoted by Bustle.com. “And so this is an issue we have to come to a resolution on and be welcoming to others to come into this nation of freedom.”
In June, Wyatt was crowned Miss South Carolina at the 80th-anniversary pageant at The Township, where she presented a dance routine. When asked what thought passed her mind when she was crowned Miss South Carolina, she said, “I prayed for peace and that’s exactly how I felt in that moment. I knew no matter what the outcome was, God has a plan. So either I was going to go back to Clemson to continue being a Rally Cat or I’m going to be Miss South Carolina.”
The beauty queen is a native of Piedmont, South Carolina, and teaches dance to special needs adults and volunteers for an organisation at the Clemson University known as the ‘Clemson Life.’ According to a report by The State, ‘Clemson Life’ is a two-year program during which students with special needs are taught independent living skills and also “get to experience everything on a college campus.”
In 2012, she won the Miss South Carolina Teen title before winning the Miss America’s Outstanding Teen pageant. She took home a $30,000 scholarship and a $2,000 scholarship for the overall talent award, the Heavy.com reported.