Well, it’s that time of year when the search to find Miss Universe Australia is well underway with State finals kicking off across the country.
Later this month at the Hotel Grand Chancellor , Surfers Paradise the judging panel will select the Queensland representatives in the 2015 Pageant.
Starting off our state finalist interviews we chat with Aquila Bergstrom one of the contestants who will be competing for a place in the national final held on June 5 at the Sofitel Melbourne on Collins where the countries finalists will be competing for the 2015 title.
Congratulations on Making it so far in the coveted miss universe Australia competition tell us a little about yourself …?
My name is Aquila Bergstrom. I just graduated from a bachelor of Public Relations and Events Management from USC. I suppose I’m a bit of a multi-tasker. I’m a model, luxury travel and fashion blogger and in my “normal job” I’m a wedding planner in Noosa (soon to be Sydney). I have dual citizenship (Australian and American) my mother is American and dad is Australian. I grew up in a tiny beach town on the eastern beaches at Coolum Beach. Since graduating from high school, aside from pursuing university I also lived abroad in NYC for modelling and prior to this I lived in the Philippines for five months modelling and volunteering at the Albert Schweitzer children’s orphanage. My hobbies include travelling, writing about my journey and philosophical beliefs and I love horse riding, scuba diving and the ocean.
Who or what inspired you to get involved in the Miss Universe Australia Pageant …? What drew you to such a competition ….?
Rachael Finch. I think she represented Australia flawlessly. She embodied the perfect combination of natural beauty and class and was very relatable to the Australian public. I was drawn to Miss Universe Australia simply because I see it as a personal challenge and I see the exposure from the competition as an opportunity to become a role model for young Australian girls. I didn’t see any negatives when entering. Sure, winning the overall crown would be amazing, but it’s about the journey, the experience, the people I’ve met and am yet to meet, and the excitement of it all. To put yourself on a platform to be judged (something most individuals avoid in their life), is something I wanted to be able to say that I faced, tried my best and followed my dreams.
If you are successful in the pageant you will become a possible inspiration or role model to many young girls how does this sit with you …? And what do you consider are the attributes of a good role model …?
Unfortunately in today’s westernised culture I feel as though a lot of the “celebrities” in which young girls look up to are portraying an image that is not exactly embodying attributes that should be applauded. To me a good role model is someone who is open, honest and a good communicator, which means an amazing listener also. A good role model portrays an image of self-worth, pride in the way they dress and speak and is someone who doesn’t need to parade around half naked in the media just to be noticed. A good role model embodies grace and integrity in all that they do and they stand up for what they believe is fair and just. They give a voice to those who may not be heard and they want the best for everyone.
The Miss Universe Pageant has a long history of associating with charity are their any social causes that are particularly close to your heart that you would like to use the platform of miss universe to advance …?
Anything targeting mental health charities is my primary cause. In particularly female teens simply because so many of them suffer and go unheard, or are misunderstood, and in some cases being silenced by everyone leaves them extremely vulnerable at an already delicate age. Teens are trying to find their two feet, how on earth can they find a solid foundation for a future if they struggle to get through each day. I’d like to use my degree of PR and Events to create annual events promoting awareness of mental health or work closely with local hospitals and create a service where individuals who want to volunteer their time to allocate themselves to a “buddy” within the mental illness wards in hospitals are able to offer their support and just be there for someone else. The wards cover a range of individuals with anorexia to depression, to anxiety and everything in between.
Another charity that is close to my heart is Operation Smile, an international children’s medical charity that provide safe, effective reconstructive surgery and related medical care for children born with facial deformities.
What do you think will set you out from the rest of the entrants competing in the 2015 competition …?
I personally believe that my combination of worldly experience from travelling to more than 28 countries, academic achievements and passion for helping others while being extremely down to earth may be enough to make me stand out. Fingers crossed!
What would you say is your best style or beauty secret …?
When talking about make up- less is more. Natural beauty never goes out of style. That doesn’t mean rolling out of bed and leaving the house as is. Personal presentation is important in any industry and is a reflection of yourself. What matters most is that you are reflecting your true self to the public eye. A proper skin cleansing regime is always of high importance, I’d recommend the range from Elucent Skincare and a yummy fragrance that takes you to a far away place is always a good choice. My favourite is Viktor & Rolf- Flowerbomb. It reminds me of NYC every time.
And speaking of personal style fitness is fast becoming more and more a part of the person’s personal style … how would you describe your fitness regime …?
I think we are so blessed to live in such a beautiful country with such diverse environments. I’m a true believer of making exercise fun, and to me being outside climbing a mountain, surfing, running on the beach or relaxing and doing a sunset yoga practice on your own is the most practical, motivating and cost-effective way of looking and feeling your best.
We all have a personal saying or particular mantra what would you say yours is ..?
Do not cling to things. Do not cling to happiness nor sadness because you are you, no one else is you. Therefore no person can tell you how to think, feel or act. You are responsible for your thoughts just as much as your actions and if you cannot harness the power of your own mind and detach from clinging to the good and bad you will struggle to find inner peace and happiness. There is beauty in dark and light you just need to change your perspective.
Now the Quick 5
1. What is something people might find interesting about yourself …?
I have dual citizenship. Australian and American, and I’ve lived in NYC before.
2. Your favourite place in the world to wind down and relax ..? Bora Bora, Tahiti. The water and diving was amazing.
What song would you say is your personal anthem or theme song …?
Jewel- Hands. The entire song has a beautiful message and it’s about understanding that every person can make a positive difference. The song has nothing to do with a guy or love other than loving yourself. There should be more songs like this.
If you could give yourself one piece of advice 5 years ago what would it be …?
Think less, live more. Do what makes you happy. Follow your intuition, your dreams and everything will be better than okay. If you work hard at what you want in life, dreams do come true.
and What are five things in your life you just can’t live without …?
Travel, working outdoors, family and friends, my scuba diving gear.