Bryan alum wins talent and academic awards in state pageant
June 26, 2009

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Brittany in the evening gown competition (see photo credit below)Brittany McGehee, a 2009 Bryan alum, finished in the top 10 at the Miss Louisiana Pageant last weekend. The competition was a preliminary to the Miss America Pageant, the largest women's competitive scholarship organization in the world.

Brittany, who was a double major in piano pedagogy and communications at Bryan, won the talent award on the opening night of the pageant. "My musical training with Dr. Sigrid Luther and performance experience at Bryan prepared me to play Franz Liszt's 'La Campanella' for the talent portion of the competition," Brittany said.

Brittany has been the reigning Miss Louisiana Watermelon Festival queen for the past year and has enjoyed her experience leading up to the Miss Louisiana pageant. "This is a very different arena for me, but I had the opportunity to meet women who are different than I am and learn a little bit of their stories. I enjoyed the rehearsals, the parties, and even the competition; but if I had to choose one thing, it would be meeting the other girls," Brittany said.

Brittany wins talent award with performance of Liszt's "La Campanella"Brittany explained that being a Bryan alum influenced her performance in the pageant. "My years at Bryan shaped how I view everything about the world...even including pageants," Brittany said. "I saw the competition as a way to share with the state how my worldview affects my opinions and the way I live my life. I think this was the most evident in my 10-minute interview, where a panel of five judges asked me questions on subjects ranging from President Obama's administration to 'the language of culture' to Twitter."

Brittany also won the Miss America Academic Award, an award given by the national organization to the state contestant with the most outstanding academic record, which she says "speaks of the excellent education I received at Bryan as well."

Brittany plans to continue teaching public speaking and debate with Hear and See Communications and expand marketing on the value debate curriculum she co-authored with fellow Bryan alum Rachel Welch ('09). She also hopes to open a private piano studio in southern Louisiana.
Top photo used with permission from