Vernon Hills student to represent Illinois at national pageant

  • Fifth-grader Jayla Wascow was recently named 2021 National American Miss Illinois.

    Fifth-grader Jayla Wascow was recently named 2021 National American Miss Illinois. Courtesy of Imagine Studios

Posted9/13/2021 12:10 PM

Jayla Wascow, daughter of Joe and Lucy Wascow, and a fifth-grader at Hawthorn School of Dual Language has earned the title of the 2021 National American Miss Illinois at the state pageant held in July at the downtown Marriott in Indianapolis, where about 40 other girls competed.

Jayla, 10, will be attending the national pageant in Orlando, Florida, at Disneyworld during Thanksgiving week, representing the state of Illinois, where she will have the opportunity to win her share of more than $500,000 in cash and prizes.


Along with winning the state title, Jayla also competed in several other competitions, winning the Spokesmodel, Actress, Casual Wear, Talent and Most Promising Model awards.

She placed first runner-up in Top Model, Runway Model, Photogenic and Miss Personality. During the week of competition she earned the Spirit of America Award and The Spirit Award for Promoting Friendship and Sportsmanship.

As part of the program, Jayla has to complete 40-60 hours of community service, and she loves volunteering in her community of Vernon Hills, Fill A Heart 4 Kids, Feed My Starving Children, The Ronald McDonald House and many more nonprofit organizations.

Jayla's favorite activities include travel soccer with the Vernon Hills Cougars and several dance genres, including ballet, tap and hip-hop, at Talent Forum dance school in Libertyville.

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Pageants are held in each state for girls ages 4-18 in five different age divisions. The National American Miss Pageants are for "Today's Girl" and "Tomorrow's Leaders." The pageant program is based on inner beauty, as well as poise and presentation.

Emphasis is placed on the importance of gaining self-confidence, learning new skills, learning good attitudes about competition, and setting and achieving personal goals. The pageant seeks to recognize the accomplishments of each girl while encouraging her to set goals for the future!

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