The search to find the next Miss Universe Australia is underway, with National finalists preparing to touch down in Melbourne later this month ahead of the national finals held at the Sofitel on Collins June 28.
We are chatting with Hannah Sellman, from WA who will be competing for the 2018 title of Miss Universe Australia.
So why don’t you tell our readers a little about yourself?
Hey! My names Hannah Sellman, I am 19 years old, and I’m from Perth, Western Australia! I’ve always lived in the city. However, I’m often mistaken for a country girl due to my extreme Aussie accent haha! I am currently in my second year of a Bachelor of Science majoring in Coastal and Marine at Curtin University. I have always had a deep connection to the ocean, I’ve grown up surfing, wakeboarding and spending days out on the boat with dad or swimming at the beach. This connection has ignited my passion for ocean conservation and the preservation of our marine life as we are coming into an era where our actions will determine the fate of the ocean. I am an extremely positive person, and I don’t think you will ever see me without a massive smile on my face!
So you’ve just returned from the Miss Universe Finalists trip to the Amazing Allia Hotels in Bali… How was the experience?
It was honestly once in a lifetime! For me it was surreal, I am used to camping down south or up north for holidays so for me to be able to experience 5-star resorts in the most beautiful locations in Bali was breathtaking, and I feel so blessed! I met some of the most caring, funny, beautiful girls on this trip and I am so excited to get closer to them in Melbourne at the final. All of us girls were utterly spoilt on this trip by Troy and Sophia, and I am so grateful for everything they did for me. Also a massive Thankyou to the whole team for their hard work and commitment to ensuring all of us girls were taken care of and pampered!
We know there was an amazing program of things for you all, what was your highlight?
For me, the highlight of the trip would have to have been dinner at Da Maria! We enjoyed some of the most delicious Italian cuisine, surrounded by gorgeous Italian inspired interior design! The main highlight of this night was after dinner when we turned the restaurant into a dance floor; everyone was up on the mini waterfall and around it dancing and singing!
So now you’re home and having undergone the best prep we can think of you know the sun, surf and Bali …. it’s not long till the national finals in Melb… how are you feeling in the lead-up and what sort of preparation are you doing, before finals week commences?
Leading up to finals all I’m feeling is excitement!! The thought of spending another week surrounded by these gorgeous girls and competing on stage beside them makes me so happy! Preparation-wise, I am mostly focusing on ensuring not only my physical health is at its best via eating healthy and boxing my heart out at Hurt Locker, but also my mental health via reinforcing positive thoughts and outcomes!
With so many of you all bringing an individual flair to the competition, what do you think will set you apart from the other contestants?
I believe what will set me apart from the other contestants is simply my passion for ocean conservation. It is a driver for everything I do, and it will be pushing me in finals to be the best version of myself. This is because, if I were to win, I would be in a crucial position to raise awareness about threats to our ocean and it’s inhabitants health. This strong passion and goal for the future if I was to win will be a huge motivator for me!
Speaking of being unique we all have different motivations, what is something that motivates you daily or you would say is your passion?
Ocean conservation is my daily motivation and passion for living life. The fact that I am in a position to directly influence and impact the future of our oceans health and the marine organisms that inhabit it is something that continually motivates me. Every day I wake up with the drive to take actions, even small ones such as reusable bags. This drive and passion for the health of our oceans make me who I am; it motivates me to protect the earth around me and advocate for change within society.
What is something people might find interesting about yourself?
I spent two weeks up north on Barrow Island in WA working for Chevron, tagging and monitoring Flatback turtle populations! Every night for two weeks, I walked stretches of beach for 8 hours until I came across a mother that had laid her eggs and tagged her and recorded her data!
Where is your favourite place in the world to wind down and relax?
The South West of Wa! For me, my escape is the coast, the clean, salty air and sound of waves crashing calms me.
The Miss Universe program has a long and proud history and focuses on helping women become the best versions of themselves, how do you think your experience so far will help move you forward in life?
My experience in Miss Universe Australia so far has dramatically impacted upon my future. The experience of fundraising for Toybox has taught me methods to promote awareness of issues in society. This correlates directly into my future as a conservationist for our oceans and marine life as I am aware of appropriate methods to raise societal awareness and encourage change. Increased communication skills and confidence are two of the most significant skills for the future that I have acquired via this competition. Communication skills are an essential requirement for most jobs hence will be highly beneficial for my future. Lastly, time management skills was a huge learning area for me haha! During this competition, I had to juggle not only its requirements but also a part-time job and full-time university. I was placed in a position in which I had to learn to manage my time perfectly to balance all of these commitments; this skill will be essential in the future!
What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?
In Bali, a few of us team WA girls were sitting in one of the cabanas outside by the pool. When all of a sudden a huge hornet decides to join the party and fly around us. Naturally, Tamara and I couldn’t remain calm and decided it was every man for himself, leaping over Ricky and off the cabana in an attempt to run away from the hornet. Sadly our escape was flawed as Tamara tripped on Ricky’s leg behind me falling and in turn taking me down with her, catching her fall. We sat on the floor laughing for ages; it is still as funny as the moment it happened!!
Name five things you can’t live without?
1. The ocean!! 2. My personal Uber (dad) 3. My family and friends 4. My dog 5. FOOD
How would your closest friend describe you?
One big Ozzie bogan goofball!!
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years I see myself as being a fully qualified marine biologist. I aim to be in a position where I can travel and operate ecotourism charters around the world, educating communities about anthropogenic impacts upon our oceans and what they can do to preserve the health of our oceans for future generations.