Thursday, April 28, 2011

Small Town Girl Big City Dreams~by Jason Hall 2/8/11

Miss West Virginia, Erica Goldsmith
by Jason Hall
“And Miss West Virginia USA 2010 is… Erica Jade Goldsmith,” was the words that this Mineral Wells native had been dreaming of for years.  Goldsmith is a former student of West Virginia University at Parkersburg who has proven that a small town girl can work hard and make dreams come true.  Born and raised in Mineral Wells, WV, Goldsmith always worked hard to maintain her reputation as a hard-working honors student. She kept busy in high school with a load of extra-curricular activities, served as Senior Class President, and still made time for part-time jobs while looking her best and winning “Best Dressed” in her graduating class.
Her work ethic, combined with her love of fashion and glamour, led to a successful pageant career throughout her teens, winning several small-town titles and taking the “Miss Photogenic” award in nearly every pageant she competed in.
After high school was over, Erica decided to stay close to home and attended WVU at Parkersburg for two years, majoring in Journalism and taking part in several activities including Student Government.  However, her big dreams of working in the entertainment industry led her to finish her education at West Virginia University in Morgantown to earn her degree, a Bachelor of Science in Broadcast Journalism.
Goldsmith holds the title for several pageants including Miss Teen West Virginia USA 2006, in which she placed second runner-up at the national pageant in Las Vegas, Nevada.  However, she did not stop there she went on to win the title of Miss West Virginia USA 2010 and competed in the Miss USA pageant that was televised live on NBC this past May from the Planet Hollywood Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
As Miss WV USA, Erica was given the opportunity to take part in many events throughout the state of West Virginia from attending fairs and festivals to participating in community service acts.
The state legislature also passed a resolution in her honor to recognize her great achievement and service to West Virginia.  Senator Frank Deem’s nomination allowed the opportunity for her to sit in on a legislative session as well as receive a tour of the state’s capitol and governor’s mansion. Parkersburg also rewarded Goldsmith with a key to the city for her ongoing community service and accomplishments.
She recalls the nationally televised event as unreal. Her schedule was filled with red-carpet events, photo shoots, rehearsals, and more. 
She shook hands with Donald Trump and Chris Angel, met celebrity chefs Curtis Stone and Paula Dean, danced with pop-rock band Boys Like Girls, was serenaded by Trace Adkins, had conversations with Joan and Melissa Rivers, and appears in the Rascal Flatts music video for “Why Wait” filmed during her stay in Vegas.
“It was such a fun experience and it’s completely surreal to see myself in a famous video,” said Erica about her music video debut.
Goldsmith went back to Las Vegas in August to watch the Miss Universe pageant and meet up with friends and acquaintances from her last national pageant experience.
“The winner of Miss USA goes on to represent the country in Miss Universe,” said Goldsmith. “This is the first time in five years that the Miss Universe pageant has been held in the USA, so I couldn’t miss it!”
Erica’s pageant career and hard work has done nothing but give her plenty of well-deserved opportunities. Now that her reign is over and a new Miss WV USA has been crowned, she is currently considering jobs throughout the country from modeling for a high-end cosmetics company to being a spokesperson and trainer for a national physical fitness program.
Whatever she chooses to do and wherever she decides to go, a part of her will always be in West Virginia, and WVU at Parkersburg, where her college education began. 

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