My name is Neelam and as the title above mentioned, I’m your Miss Southern Quebec World 2017! Many people were surprised when I announced that I was participating in the Miss World Canada National pageant because the truth is, I’ve always been a nerd. I was known as the girl who always had her head in a book, studying and if someone would have told me 5 years ago that today I was representing Quebec in the Nationals, I would’ve never believed it.
The first question people tend to ask me is how I, from all people, got involved in this pageant. The truth is, deciding to participate in a pageant of this magnitude is never one someone could make overnight. I have always wanted to help other people whether it was tutoring students or raising money for various causes. However, the desire to participate in a pageant only started a few years ago when I was introduced to the Arts. In 2015, I was fortunate enough to be an extra for Amy Adams’ movie “Arrival” which was filmed in Montreal. I was able to see all the effort and the number of people that need to work together to film one scene. It was then that I fell in love with the Arts, with performing, with costume changes and with being in the spotlight.
Extra for a movie scene. Amy Adams top right, Neelam bottom left.
I am always looking for a new experience, whether that means traveling to a new country or learning something new. When we get out of our comfort zones, we tend to grow and we learn new things about ourselves. I was happy with being the school nerd but, had I not reached out of my comfort zone then maybe I wouldn’t be where I am today. Just this May, I was in India for 3 weeks for my brother’s wedding. Indian weddings tend to have at least 5 different events and I was able to learn the importance of each one. It was such an amazing experience and I had the time of my life there. Visiting other countries helps us learn about their values and culture. One of the reasons why I love Canada so much is because in one country, we have so much diversity. We are given the ability to be friends with people who come from all around the world and we get to learn from them!
I am currently the manager at an optometry clinic. I graduated last year from McGill University with a Bachelor’s of Science and I will be returning to school to complete my Master’s in Vision Rehabilitation. I want to help people see! My academic goal for the future is to become an optometrist and go to foreign countries which don’t have the necessities to provide ocular healthcare and use what I have learned from school to help out.
Regardless of what happens this July at the National pageant, I know that I got out of my comfort zone, was able to meet strong women from across the country and earn a title that will enable me to get involved with my community and for that, I am extremely grateful.
Thank you so much for your love and support!
Miss Southern Quebec World 2017.