Meet Your Miss Teen North Dakota International 2016, Meghanne Quam

Coming from a small town in the North, many people don't have the best idea, or even know what a pageant is. Nearly two years ago was when I began competing in pageants, and with being new to me I never truly understood all of the excitement until I met wonderful ladies and life-long friends through pageants.
    I was born in raised in Jamestown, North Dakota with a passion for children with special needs. My family and I have lived my platform, “Every Child Deserves a Companion”, every day of my life by taking in children with special needs who don't have a parent or guardian in their lives.
I am employed at the Anne Carlsen Center for Children which is a school for special needs children and a volunteer for our local Special Olympics' teams. Also, I am currently a Senior at Jamestown High School and have my first semester of college completed through dual credit classes.
Now, if you don't know me, you might be wondering how to pronounce my name. Well, you pronounce it just like any other Megan. Mine is just special because my grandmother wanted her middle name to be my middle name, but Megan Anne didn't sound quite right so we just added it to my name and created Meghanne Lynn Quam. The “h” was just to make it extra hard for me to spell while trying to learn it in kindergarten, as my mom always jokes.  I am not an only child, I have one sister Kaitlyn, 4 step-sisters, and 1 step-brother. I am the oldest sibling and  grandchild on both sides of my family as well. My mom, Nicole, is a full time small business owner of our very own prom and bridal shop, Nicole's Bridal and Prom Boutique. My dad, Nick, is a full time National Guard recruiter and has been deployed to Iraq twice. I love both of my parents occupations, but I plan on taking my own path into my love of special needs to achieve my degree in Special Education and Occupational Therapy beginning next fall at the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota.
    I have always been a girly-girl, but what a lot of people don't know is that behind all my pageant hair and make-up I love to be outdoors. I love to participate in anything, from ice-fishing in the winter, to jet skiing and wake-boarding in the summer. I also have a huge place in my heart for taking in people and animals into my home. Last Christmas was our newest edition to the family, my cat named Sadie, and this past Christmas was a boy from the Anne Carlsen Center because his family was unable to take him home for the holidays. My love for taking care of people and animals has made me recently decide to hopefully partner with PATH, an organization with a dedicated mission “Families Making the Difference” giving people an opportunity to become a certified foster parent and helps children and families that have experienced traumatic events and struggles with serious behavioral health problems. This April I plan on taking the class to become a certified foster parent for children with special needs.
    Not only do I enjoy doing all of those things but my family does as well. Some things my family and I enjoy doing together are jet-skiing, shopping, relaxing on the beach, and watching 80's movies... a lot of 80's movies. My favorite 80's movie would have to be the “Goonies” or all of the “Back to the Future” productions. My dad and I really enjoy singing. I have been in choir for 8 years now, and I have loved every moment of it. I also enjoy musicals, and I have attended two Broadway shows in New York City which includes “Beauty and the Beast” and “Phantom of the Opera.” This summer, before I attend nationals in Florida, I will be back in New York City and I am seeing my fourth musical and third musical on Broadway, “Lion King.”
    As Miss Teen North Dakota International 2016, I look forward to my time and travels sharing and spreading awareness about my platform to everyone across our beautiful state and beyond. I am blessed and beyond grateful for the opportunities I have had so far and for the many more that are yet to come. “Remember, love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference.” -Helen James

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