In what may be the most crucial and most nerve-wracking part of every beauty pageant, the question-and-answer portion usually determines the ranking of each finalist.
The Top 5 Miss Universe Philippines 2021 candidates had their last chance to convince the judges that they deserve the crown at the final round of the pageant last Thursday, Sept. 30. The Q&A round allowed the ladies to show their ability to hold themselves on stage under pressure and give the judges a more in-depth look into their personalities.
Taking home the ultimate crown this year was Cebu City's Beatrice Gomez, who also bagged four other special awards during the coronation night.
MUPH also introduced two new titles: Miss Universe Philippines Tourism and Miss Universe Philippines Charity, and awarded it to Taguig's Katrina Dimaranan and Cavite's Victoria Vincent, respectively. While Pangasinan's Maureen Wroblewitz placed 1st runner-up, and Cebu Province's Steffi Aberasturi finished 2nd runner-up.
During the final statement round, each candidate had to answer a randomly picked question within 30 seconds. Here's what they had to say.
Cebu City, Miss Universe Philippines
If during your reign as Miss Universe Philippines, things happen in your life that make you sad and uninspired, how would you be able to continue inspiring others?
Gomez: It is very evident that all of us went through difficulties during this pandemic, but it is also proof that we are able to rise to the occasion. And if anything happened to me during my reign, I will not give up and inspire others by rising to the problems that I am encountering and by inspiring them that, whatever you’re going through, you will be able to overcome it.
Taguig, Miss Universe Philippines Tourism
What do you think is the most inspiring quality that a Miss Universe Philippines should possess and why?
Dimaranan: It would have to be the ability to have compassion and relate to other people, because, as we know, Miss Universe has to be able to connect people in all different countries from all different classes. So I would have to say relatability and compassion, because as a Miss Universe, it’s your job to inspire others and to genuinely want to help, whether it be through organizations, or any companies, or groups of people, so there you go.
Cavite, Miss Universe Philippines Charity
In your journey to be Miss Universe Philippines, what has been the most inspiring part and why?
Vincent: The people that I’ve met and stories that I’ve heard. Especially during the pandemic, people have risen to overcome everything that they’ve gone through. And I’m someone… I’ve been incredibly privileged and I haven’t had to go through that many issues in my life. But meeting so many people who have had so many battles and hearing their stories and hearing how they overcame them, that’s what inspires me. That’s what inspires me to continue to help the Filipinos in the way that I know how, which is through my advocacy, through architecture and heritage conservation.
Pangasinan, 1st runner-up
If you win the crown tonight, how will you inspire other women who get out of their comfort zone?
Wroblewitz: Just me being here, I am getting out of my comfort zone. I am conquering my fear, because I am afraid to talk in front of a lot of people. But I hope that through me, I get to inspire so many to do the same, to achieve their dreams but to also reach for the universe.
Cebu Province, 2nd runner-up
How will you empower young women, and help them become more socially aware?
Aberasturi: Now with social media, this tool has been a driving force in all of us. But we have to draw a borderline so that these youth will not take advantage of the social media. We have to see the social media like how it is, the way it is designed, and that is to unite people and never to divide us in the first place. We have to be responsible user.
Photos courtesy of Miss Universe Philippines and PLDT Home