An Oklahoma City high school student was crowned Miss America’s Outstanding Teen 2017 on Saturday in Orlando, Florida. Nicole Jia, 17, will reign for one year as the official National Teen Goodwill Ambassador for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. 

She will also appear throughout the United States to promote her personal platform, "This Little Light of Mine.” Nicole was awarded a $30,000 scholarship from the Harris Rosen Foundation and the Orlando Scholarship Foundation, Inc., and a $500 scholarship after being named the recipient of the pageant’s Outstanding Instrumentalist Award.

A pageant for the younger set

The teen Pageant is the younger-sister competition within the Miss America Organization.

Contestants are ages 13-17 years old. Like a growing number of pageants involving teens, Miss America’s program for younger girls does not have a swimsuit competition

Contestants are judged on the basis of talent, evening gown, interview and active wear scores from judges.They compete for a variety of scholarships and other awards.

Scholarships for runners-up

Catherine White of North Carolina was named the first runner-up. She received a $10,000 scholarship. Earning a $7,500 scholarship was Kelsey Hollis of Georgia who was named the second runner-up. Third runner-up was Angelica Jones of Florida. She received a $5,000 scholarship. Sarah Katherine McCallum of Louisiana earned $2,000 as fourth runner-up. 

Winner of the America’s Choice Award was Alysa Bainbridge of Pennsylvania.

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The America’s Choice competition gave online fans an opportunity to vote for their favorite contestant. By winning the award, Alysa became the 11th semi-finalist in pageant competition.

Miss America pageant is next month

Miss America contestants compete next month in Atlantic City, New Jersey. After several days of pageantry, new royalty will be crowned on Sept. 11. 

The final evening of competition and the crowning will be broadcast live by the ABC Television network.The reigning Miss America is Betty Cantrell of Warner Robins, Georgia.

Her ambition is to graduate from a conservatory for musical theater before embarking on a career on Broadway in New York City.