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Dust x PLR – A Chat With Miss Universe Ghana, Jennifer Koranteng

Dust: What made you decide to participate in the Miss Universe pageant?
Jennifer Koranteng: It all started with friends and family encouraging me to enter the pageant and I’d seen the former Miss Universe Ghana doing very well and I saw it as a great platform from which to do good things.
Where you in school at the time you decided to join the competition?

No, I’d just finished and graduated, so it was perfect timing!
Early rumors suggested that you were a very strong contender to win, did you ever have an indication that you were in the lead and if yes, why do you think that it didn’t translate to the main ceremony?

I went to the Miss Universe pageant with the notion that every contestant had already won in their respective countries, so anyone could come out on top. My utmost concern at the pageant was to do the best that I could and not to look around and think “someone else is doing better,” or “that girl is going to win”. I was more interested in portraying Ghana in the right light to the rest of the world.
Did you ever experience (or observe) any jealousy between contestants during the pageant?

You know, girls will always be girls, but despite this, everyone was conscious of themselves because they knew they were representing their countries – you’re an ambassador for your country. Most of the girls were very courteous and polite.

What was your most memorable moment during the pageant?

My most memorable moment of the pageant is immediately after the pageant. We didn’t have our sashes on anymore and I remember some Mexicans and Spanish people chanting “Ghana! Ghana! Ghana!” It gave me so much joy because I didn’t think anyone would recognize me without my sash on.

You were quoted as saying that you’d love to use the Miss Universe Ghana platform to “support the needy in society and to spell-out the importance of education, especially for the girl child”, what plans do you have to fulfill this promise?

I feel that education is a very important asset, especially for the girl child, who is most frequently discriminated against. Together with the Miss Universe Ghana organizers, I’ve cooked up an idea to start a reading program in less privileged schools so we can inculcate the habit of reading.

What do you think are the most important challenges currently facing young women in Accra?

Employment. Most women have difficulty finding and securing jobs after graduating from school and university. When a man and a woman go for an interview, there is often preferential treatment given in favor of the man.

Also, women find it difficulty in being promoted, even when they’ve worked hard to earn it.

If you could meet any 3 Ghanaians (dead or alive), who would you choose?

I would definitely choose Dr Kwame Nkrumah – I’ve heard so much about him and there’s so much I’d like to learn from him one-on-one. I’d also like to meet our current president, Prof. John Evans Atta-Mills.

I’d also like to meet the Chairman of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, Joyce Ayonee because she is an inspiration to all Ghanaian women because she is the head of a male-dominated industry and is excellent at her job.

On a lighter note, what would you consider to be the ‘perfect’ date?

Someone who is handsome, someone who is charming, but most of all, someone who listens.

Who do you look up to, and why?

My idol and mentor is Ms Isabelle Thompson, CEO of Thompson Consultancy. She’s a very brave woman, she’s high-spirited, she pushes people to be achievers especially since she’s an achiever herself and she never lets anybody down.

10. Do you have a message for all the young ladies out there that see you as a beautiful inspiration and who hope to follow in your footsteps?

I would encourage every girl and young woman to never stop dreaming because you’ll never know when you’ll achieve it. Few people realize that I competed in Miss Ghana three years ago and I was first runner up. I knew my dream and I didn’t think it was enough, so I had faith in what I could be and so I continued dreaming that I would be on the world stage, representing my country. So, being at Miss Universe, representing my country three years on from my first pageant, was the most fulfilling experience and I would encourage everyone to never give up on a dream.


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