Welcome home Megan!

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By her own admission, Megan Young is scared of heights. “I am just afraid of getting up there, but I am willing to take the challenge and face my fears,” the new Miss World said in an interview in London just days after she was crowned at the pageant’s glittering gala in Bali, Indonesia.

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She took the challenge and faced her fears, and the regal 23-year-old from Olongapo City is “up there” right now, in the rarefied realm reserved for the famous and the beautiful.

Megan is no stranger to celebrity. She had always wanted to be a movie star, a dream that she nurtured early in life. She was only 15 when she signed up for the reality talent search Starstruck. She was one of the top three finalists, a promising start to a showbiz career.

TV offers came naturally after that, and Megan blossomed as a show host and telenovella mainstay. In-between her television stints she found the time to do what she loved to do most: act in movies. Between 2005 and this year, Megan was cast in 11 movies, including challenging roles in a couple of indie films.

But the world stage beckoned. Megan joined the search for the 2013 Miss World Philippines and emerged as the runaway winner. That earned her a ticket to the Miss World pageant in Indonesia.

The rest, as the tired but appropriate cliché goes, is history.

Megan’s radiance and easy confidence gave her a clear edge over the 120 or so contestants in Bali. She won the Top Model competition, and gained high scores in the Multimedia Challenge and Beach Beauty segments.

By the time the pageant entered the semifinals, it was clear that the Filipina was the favorite.

The clincher, of course, was her performance in the question-and-answer portion, when the judges got to pick the brains of the finalists.

To the question, Why should you be Miss World?, Megan coolly replied: “I treasure a core value of humanity and that guides people why they act the way they do. I will use this to show other people how they can understand each other … as one, we can help society.”

That was the defining moment that gave the Philippines its first Miss World winner. We finally have a “Triple Crown” in the major international beauty pageants. Filipinas have worn the Miss Universe and Miss International tiaras before, but never Miss World’s.

To say that big things are in store for Megan Young is a gross understatement. Right now she has the world in her hands. She has been offered a part in a Hollywood film, but that will have to wait until she relinquishes the title next year.

She is overwhelmed by the outpouring of congratulations and praise from her countrymen. “They say thank you for being the inspiration to them and for giving the country hope in terms of what has been happening… from uplifting people’s spirits to showing that there is always a better side to things,” Megan said in an interview in the International Business Times website.

“I just really can’t wait to go back home and see everyone and thank everyone,” she added.

Megan’s flying home today, taking a break from her duties in London as Miss World. Let’s all welcome our Miss World and thank her for making us proud.

Welcome home Megan!

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