Jasmine Sabio had different plans from most students for the Fourth of July. While most of the country shot fireworks and grilled hamburgers, Sabio found out she was going to compete in the Miss Philippines USA competition.
Sabio, a junior majoring in chemical engineering and a member of Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, was crowned Miss Philippines USA Aug. 18 in La Mirada, Calif.
A producer in California reached out to a family friend of Sabio’s in Hunstville, Ala., where Sabio is from, to inform her about the competition. The family friend convinced Sabio to give the producer a call and see what the competition required.
“They didn’t have anything on their website, so I just emailed them and they asked me to call them,” Sabio said. “Little did I know it was an interview.”
Sabio said the producer started asking her in-depth questions and at the end of the conversation, wanted a head shot picture and said Sabio was accepted to participate in the competition.
“It was an out of the blue, spontaneous adventure that my whole family wanted to go on,” Sabio said. “My dad was more excited than I was. He booked my plane ticket and hotel room almost immediately.”
Sabio is one of four children. Her parents were born and raised in the Philippines. She said her dad was happy for her to be exploring her culture. Sabio is hoping to do philanthropy work dealing with flooding in Manila, the capital of the Philippines, a town close to her heart.
“The day after my coronation, the Philippines had one month’s worth of rain in one day in the metro city,” Sabio said. “I’m raising awareness that this tragedy is going on in the Philippines right now.”
Between working on her philanthropy and interview skills, Sabio said she hardly had time to train for the swimsuit competition. She said since she didn’t have time to work with a trainer, so she tried to eat healthier.
“I cut down on my Quick Grill and Hungry Howie’s and tried to go to the gym as much as I could,” Sabio said.
Sabio said she will be going back to California in October for orientation and to get prepped for a media tour. She said her life hasn’t changed since being back at school, and she is just trying to get back into her routine.
Sabio’s brother Jason, a third-year law student at the University, said he is very proud of her accomplishment. He said her winning has brought happiness to their family and friends all over the world.
“Jasmine is smart, compassionate and beautiful,” Jason said. “Her shimmering smile, compassionate heart and brilliant mind is the perfect vehicle to promote awareness regarding the various problems that plague the Philippines today.”
Hailey Palmer, a sophomore majoring in psychology and a friend of Sabio, said she is the most deserving person for the crown.
“She’s the most humble and loving person I know. She’s not only my best friend, but I’m fortunate enough to call her my big in our sorority, Alpha Gamma Delta,” Palmer said. “Jasmine never even expected to be given such an honor, and to this day, still believes she does not deserve it, when I think she deserves it the most.”
Sabio has the opportunity to continue on to the Miss Philippines World or the Miss Philippines Earth pageant. Miss Philippines USA is not a preliminary to Miss USA but to Miss Philippines, which then feeds into the Miss Universe competition.