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  • Writer's picturecharlotte lister

Interview with Miss Idaho Collegiate United States – Morgan Chaffee

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions about your pageant journey for my pageant lockdown blog it’s been lovely getting to know fellow queens and more about the systems that they represent.

Can you introduce yourself ?

Miss Idaho Collegiate United States , Morgan Chaffee , 22

What made you enter pageants ?

I entered pageants to promote my message and empower myself as a woman in politics, as a speaker.

Can you tell us about your pageant journey so far ?

My previous pageant experience includes the two previous titles which were local level scholarship festival titles/pageants. They involved tons of public speaking events and parades which were so great!

Previous titles ?

2015 Rhododendron Royalty Princess

2011 Rhododendron Royalty Queens Court

What made you decide to compete in your current system ?

I chose NUS because it has great values, expectations, and it is a new system that caught my eye.

What have pageants taught you ?

Pageants have taught me to try hard and not give up, even when you get down.

What’s your pageant platform and why ?

My platform is Salmon advocacy, dam removal, and river restoration. The population of orca whales in the pacific has dropped to critically endangered levels in recent years due to the lack of salmon, which compromise the main diet of orca whales. Salmon, are also endangered, due to the loss of critical habitat in my state, Idaho. The Lower Snake River has some of the coldest water that is ideal for salmon spawning habitats and critical to apart the circle of life for salmon, which is returning to the stream they were born to spawn and die. The reason for the loss of habitat? The rivers are blocked by four large federal dams that were constructed in the early 1900s for hydroelectricity production and flat river barging.However, the dams produce less than 1/3 of the minimum expected hydroelectrical output, and barging has largely been replaced by trucking, and is at less than 2% of the barging that it used to have. These dams have caused more PROBLEMS for the rivers than good, and tax payers are paying for it with the production of hatchery fish, that just die at the dams anyway. Dam removal has proven to solve the problem of salmon habitat loss and advocates of dam removal have found less expensive alternatives to replace the loss of flat river for barging and the loss of hydroelectric output if the dams are removed. All previous dam removal projects have proven successful to date. Its a heartbreaking cycle that I hope I am able to shed light on with my title and if I win the national title. I chose this platform because it is an issue I know that our community can collectively fix. My family also is involved in the marine industry.

What’s your dream title ?

The Miss Collegiate United States title (current system / title I’m seeking).

If you were to win Miss Collegiate United States what would it mean to you ?

If I were to win I know that I would be able to make a difference with my platform nationally, perhaps globally.

What’s the best advice you have for fellow pageant queens ?

Best advice: study, research, and listen to others who have done this before you, and now with you. These are all valuable experiences you will reflect on.

What have you been doing in the run up to your pageant final ?

On the run up to the pageant next month I have been studying for my LSATs, reading lots of books of all variety and topic, and prepping for my pageant with Empower Mental Training

Do you have a favourite pageant appearance ?

My favourite appearance with the Palouse Prairie Charter School 3rd Graders via Zoom. We were planning a big project, but with the COVID outbreak that was canceled. I was glad I could do a video call with them.

How has lockdown due to Covid19 affected your pageant journey ?

Well, COVID of course changed all of my planned in person appearances to video calls, or canceled all together. It has helped me focus on my preparation however, and I was able to help the community in other ways like making masks and cards for first responders and physicians

Do you have a pageant role model ?

Pageant role model would be Deshauna Barber (Miss USA2016)

What’s your favourite pageant round ?

Evening gown!

How do you deal with pageant nerves ?

Pageant nerves are best fought by good preparation, some relaxing before the rounds, and remembering that there is so much to your life with the title, or not.

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions it’s been lovely getting to know you, your platform and more about the system you represent I wish you all the best at your final next month. Much love Charlotte, Ms Diamond South Yorkshire 2020.

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