Well, it’s that time of year when the search to find Miss Universe Australia is well underway with finalists being selected across the country.
Early next month at the Sofitel on Collins Melbourne the judging panel have the incredibly hard job of selecting the 2015 Miss Universe Australia.
Starting off our finalist interviews we chat with Kayla Paul from WA who is one of the national finalists who will be competing for the 2015 title of Miss Universe Australia and hoping to follow in the footsteps of Jennifer Hawkins, Rachael Finch, Jesinta Campbell and last years winner Tegan Martin.
First of all the all-important introduction tell us a little about you…?
Hi, my name is Kayla Paul. I am currently 21 years old and living in Perth, Western Australia. I am the second of four children and also the shortest!
Although I was born in Perth, I grew up in the small coastal town of Esperance. Esperance is surrounded by some of the most amazing waves, oceanic shores and hidden bays, so there was no way for me not to love the beach! As a child I always loved collecting interesting shells and pebbles, which led to me bringing home almost half the beach just so I could add them to my collection.
Growing up I had little success with the usual sports chosen by girls including dancing, gymnastics and swimming, instead I took to mixed soccer. I have continued to play since I was 14 and was named Best And Fairest, as well as Captain in my team, last year.
What many people don’t know about me is that although I cannot dance well, I do have a love and appreciation for the arts! I learnt to play the Clarinet and Saxophone in primary school for six years and continued to practice both jazz and classical music in high school. I was in the Jazz band and went on to sing in the Chorale. I absolutely love classical music, especially the soundtrack to Amelie. I also love drama and acting, and was cast in the main role for a music video in 2013.
I am currently finishing off my final year in an undergraduate degree majoring in Social Psychology and Marketing, whilst also working part-time at a café. I love my job and bringing a smile to a customer’s face, even if it is from simply handing them their Monday-itis coffee. I hope to finish my degree this year and next year take time to travel and work on my own brand. In the future I would love to pursue as a motivational speaker, inspiring the youth of today to achieve their goals and conquer social pressures.
I spent a month at the start of last year volunteering at a Children’s Home in Sangkhlaburi, Thailand. This was such an eye-opening and rewarding experience that it’s difficult to describe in so little words. In the near future I would love to work on more projects like this.
I love challenging myself and trying new things which has led me to the Miss Universe Pageant. Through the competition I hope to gain knowledge and experience from the inspiring men and women of today, and in turn come out a better person than I was yesterday. I believe, above all, that a positive mindset is the key to any success, and that success is however you define it.
Congratulations on making it so far in such a coveted competition! We have to ask how has the overall experience been so far …? And how are you feelings in the lead up to the finals. ..?
Thanks so much! My experiences so far with the Miss Universe Australia Pageant have been amazing! I’ve loved meeting new faces and participating in all the activities! Here in WA we participated in Boxing (which I love!), Pilates, etiquette workshops, hair and makeup workshops, social and charitable events, and more!
My feelings leading up to the finals are of course excitement but I am also calmed by the idea that I have achieved more than I ever anticipated this past year! I cannot wait to meet all the new girls and the Miss Universe team from the ‘East side’.
With contestants coming from all over the country and bringing their own individual flare
What do you think will set you out from the rest of the finalists competing in the 2015 competition …?
What most people will notice about me when they first meet me is of course my height! Measuring in at just over 160cm I am the ‘shorty’ of the group, however, I like to think that I have the personality and smile to make up for it! I’m a super bubbly girl, and I believe that height shouldn’t stop anyone from achieving their goals, besides, good things come in small packages! J
What is something people might find interesting about yourself …?
I absolutely love fun facts! I initially picked up this flare for fun facts whilst working at my coffee shop. I became bored of the typical small talk with customers and wanted to tell people something they would like to hear. Since then, I have continued to share fun facts with everyone!
Fun fact: Shakespeare’s wife was named Anne Hathaway, which also happens to be the name of the 21st century American actor!
Speaking of a person’s unique flare or style what would you say is your best style or beauty secret …?
My favourite style secret: if you are looking for an easy casual summer outfit, you can usually buy a larger size shirt and belt it so that it looks like a dress!
With Fitness becoming more and more a part of a person’s personal style how would you describe your fitness regime and how it relates to your life …?
Although I have forever been a soccer girl, last year I picked up Boxing! I tried joining a gym numerous times but found that I get very bored with solitary fitness. However, I do love Vinyasa yoga and meditation. I think that being ‘healthy’ and happy starts from within and that a lot of people can forget this.
Who or what inspired you to get involved in the Miss Universe Australia Pageant …? What drew you to such a competition ….?
A couple years ago my soccer companion Tamlin Dobrich started talking to the girls at training about how she was entering in the Miss Universe Pageant. I followed her journey through to the national finals and a couple years later I found myself trying out for the same competition! I was extremely unsure about whether or not to enter, thinking it was just a competition for tall models, however I soon found this to be incorrect and thought to myself ‘why not give it a go? I’ve got nothing to lose’.
Speaking of inspiration who inspires you most …?
While I was in Thailand I met a lady named Didi. She was a kind of ‘mother’ to the children at the home I volunteered at named Baan Unrak. She is my most inspirational person because despite the death of her business partner, and questionable views from the government about her work, she continued to run the children’s home for Thai and refugee Burmese children. I admire the way that she promotes love of all humans and things through the ideology “neo-humanism”. Didi inspires me to help and love people of all kinds.
The Miss Universe Pageant has a long history of associating with charity are there any social causes that are particularly close to your heart that you would like to use the platform of miss universe to advance …?
I discovered a love for children while I was away in Thailand volunteering for a month at a rural children’s home. Through my volunteer program I was exposed to some of the poverty and harsh situations some people are living in every day. I realised that there are so many things that we take for granted like fresh water, a clean bed or even access to education. If I was given the opportunity to work with a charity of my choice it would be World Vision as they are one of Australia’s largest charities and offer amazing services helping thousands of people around the world. I would love to be a part of an organisation that aims to make these situations even just that tiny bit better than it was before and make every day living a little bit easier.
What is something you hope to bring out of the Miss Universe Australia Pageant …?
My life goal is to some way or another, help those around me. I feel that the Miss Universe Australia Pageant allows girls to become role models especially for the younger generation, whilst also providing them with opportunities to pursue their goals and aspirations. I hope to learn from the competition so that I can one day pass my knowledge and skills onto someone else and inspire them to chase after their goals.
Now the Quick 5
What is something you find yourself always saying …?
Your Favourite place in the world to wind down and relax …?
Down at the beautiful beaches of Cape Le Grand National Park, Esperance, Western Australia where all you can hear are the sounds of the waves and the animals.
What song would you say is your personal anthem or theme song …?
‘Circle of Life’ from The Lion King
If you could give yourself one piece of advice 5 years ago what would it be …?
“Never stop believing that you can achieve something.”
And Finally five things you can’t live without …?
Shampoo and conditioner