Emili Elizabeth McPhail

Virginia 2018

Emili Elizabeth McPhail

State: Virginia

School: Hollins University

College Major: Communication Studies

Scholarship Winnings: $24,000

Social Impact Initiative: Ending Hunger in the U.S.

For most Americans, we only think about hunger when we feel a rumble in our stomachs close to meals time. Many of us then go into the kitchen or run to the nearest restaurant without thinking twice. For 41 million Americans, however, it is not that simple. We often associate this sort of need with those who live in third world countries, homeless shelters, or even someone holding a sign by the side of the street. But the reality is that 28.3 million adults and nearly 13 million children face food insecurity in the United States each day. These numbers represent citizens of the US, neighbors, friends, classmates, single mothers, and sometimes even our families, who cannot function properly, perform poorly in schools and the workplace, and are more likely to develop certain illnesses and diseases. This is a national problem that is often overlooked, especially when we do not know the facts or ignore them.

Miss America empowered me to: expand my service and work with the hungry from my community to several states.

Bio: I recently graduated from Hollins University where I studied communication and minored in psychology and leadership studies. Having spent many years competing as an Outstanding Teen, it is my honor to serve as Miss Virginia 2018. In my travels, I hope to inspire each person to be of service to their community. I have gained so much by working to End Hunger in the US, and while sharing resources to those in need across the Commonwealth, I intend to help others find their passion through volunteerism. It’s my goal to end the cycle of hunger for all Virginians and Americans.

Photo credit: Yachin Parham