Miss UVU is supposed to be many things, but among others, she is supposed to be representative of our collective student body. I had the opportunity to ask Valerie Moon, Miss UVU 2010, a few questions regarding her life, platform and pageant involvement. Get to know her and you can probably relate on one level or another, which is fitting because she is now a visible icon of the UVU community.
Where are you from and how did you become involved with dancing?
Moon: “I grew up in the small town of Duchesne, Utah and I started dancing at a studio that was a half-hour away because there weren’t any studios in Duchesne. I started dancing there when I was about 3-years-old and danced there until I went into high school and then I did cheerleading and drill team.”
Can you tell me about your family and how your platform comes so close to home?
Moon: “There are six people total in my family, I am the second to youngest, so there are four children. My dad has a ranch, we have horses and he hauls livestock and things. In pageants we have to have a platform and mine is ‘Organ and Tissue Donation’ and it’s because when my little brother was 3 he fell out of my dad’s semi and his arm got ran over, and so they had to have donor tissue and it saved his arm, so that is why I chose organ and tissue donation for my platform.”
Can you give me more details regarding organ and tissue donation?
Moon: “It is a personal choice and some people just don’t want to and that’s totally fine. What I want to do with organ and tissue donation is just educate people about it because a lot of people don’t know what it is, and because it is on your drivers license, when they are asked they immediately reject it because they don’t know what it is. It is really just knowing about it and that it really is so safe and it’s giving away organs after you’re already dead. It really is a miracle; it changes peoples lives all over. I just want to inform people so they can decide for themselves, I don’t want to push anyone to be an organ donor. I just want them to know about it. The reason why people don’t usually do it is because there are lots of myths, so I want to dispel those.”
Why did you want to enter the Miss UVU Pageant?
“I was Miss Duchesne County 2008 and then I went to Miss Utah in 2009, so I will go to Miss Utah again in June 2010. My sister was actually Miss Duchesne County when she was about my age, and I dance so I had [the] talent aspect and I feel strongly about organ tissue donation. It was an easy platform, so it all kind of fell into place. I love it, I better myself so much every time I do a pageant. I listen to the news, whenever I do a pageant I am always caught up on everything, after it’s done it feels good to know what is going on in the world. Normally its hard to make it a priority.”
What opportunities are available to you as the new Miss UVU 2010?
Moon: “After you become a title holder it is really working with your platform and service is one of the main things after the pageant is over. I am just really excited because I get to work with my platform and I get to go to Miss Utah again.
I’m excited to get going and I am excited to be able to branch out and meet new people. I think this is an amazing opportunity. I think that pageants get stereotypes to be just a beauty pageant and they are not that at all, after you become Miss UVU, it is all about service and working and giving your time to help others, so I think it is way more than just a beauty pageant, I wouldn’t do it if it was just a beauty pageant.”
What thoughts went through your head when they called your name as the pageant winner?
Moon: “I really was so shocked. You do rehearsals and workshops with all the girls and after spending so much time with all of them you can pick out every single one and think ‘Oh she could win, she is really strong in this area’ and with a different set of judges someone else would have won. I am a believer of things happen for a reason, so there was a reason why I was chosen that night. It is hard because everyone is so talented, so I really was, like, way shocked. I was way excited but I wasn’t expecting it at all.”