Marketing major Celine Rabo took the crown on January 26 at the 12th Annual Ms. Philippines 2019: More Than Just a Pretty Face pageant, becoming the first student from St. John’s University to capture the title.
“I am so proud to have represented St. John’s at the pageant, and I am thrilled to be the first from the University to be named Ms. Philippines,” said Celine, who is in her fourth year in a combined degree program in The Peter J. Tobin College of Business. She is expected to graduate in May with a bachelor of science degree, and she is on target to earn a Master of Business Administration degree at the end of her fifth year.
Celine also received recognition for the “Most Cultural” and “Miss Charity” portions of the inter-collegiate event, which was hosted in Newark Symphony Hall by the Rutgers University-Newark Filipino Student Association. Celine competed against students from 24 colleges and universities, including Columbia University, Stony Brook University, and Hunter College.
The theme of “More than Just a Pretty Face” was designed to showcase empowered Filipino women who are determined to break through the glass ceiling while defying female stereotypical social norms.
“I chose to utilize this platform to advocate for the right to use our voices as a catalyst for change and as a way of sharing our story,” Celine said.
Celine also credited Philippine-Americans Reaching Everyone (PARE), a St. John’s student club that aims to promote the unity and awareness of the Philippine culture, for inspiring her to compete in the pageant.
“With diversity comes opportunity,” said Celine. “I am indebted to St. John’s PARE for constantly providing outlets to showcase our Filipino culture.”