You may think that juggling multiple internships, beauty pageants, being a sorority president and a student at the same time is overwhelming, but Paula Verkuylen can handle pretty much anything. With a passion to strive to build the best and most positive results, Paula always finds a way to keep herself occupied. No matter how much she puts onto her plate, she always manages to set the bar higher to improve herself and to improve the environment around her. No wonder she is such a superstar.
Entering UCI as a freshman, Paula was looking for a way to recreate her high school experience. She was involved in her school’s ASB and she looked for clubs to keep herself busy. Jumping right into the Greek system, bonding with her hall mates, and joining the Merage Undergraduate Student Association was the best way she could ease the transition into her college life.
Joining the Gamma Phi Beta sorority was the best way she could find herself able to recreate high school and also push forward and grow even more. The Greek system had every aspect of a club, and she felt as though she could experience it all. There were other older members to serve as mentors for her, she was able to participate in sports and ASB, meet new people, and help the chapter grow and change. This inspired her to get more involved with internships in fields she enjoys. She even became the chapter president, under which the sorority saw drastically better changes after her legacy. Some of her noteworthy internships include Bop and Tigerbeat Magazine where she blogged social media and attended young Hollywood events where she was able to interview stars such as Victoria Justice from Nickelodeon and Bella Thorne from Disney. She also interned for Clearchanel Media under iHeartRadio, KISFM along with a few other AM and FM stations as a marketing intern. She was able to work behind the scenes of the Jingleball as well as the opening of iHeartRadio in LA. “I enjoy these internships because I get to work in fields I am passionate about,” Paula said regarding her superstar-like experiences.
Her exciting opportunities continue as Paula was also the first runner up in the Miss City of Orange Pageant. “Miss City of Orange was always a positive role model, she helped girls gain their self-esteem and confidence,” Paula said. Paula admitted to never even imagining herself to be in a pageant before, but she soon learned that being in a pageant does not mean you have to be the stereotype. She explained that you can still hold feminine confidence, be classy, and graceful without being stereotypically “girly.”
Her pageant experience does not stop there, however. Recently, she participated in the Orange County Orange Coast pageant. She explained that she met so many wonderful, smart, and successful women who are beautiful inside and out while participating in these pageants. Currently, she is searching for a job and looking forward to continuing to grow her experience in the sports, music, and entertainment industries. She has also applied to work for Gamma Phi Beta when she turns alumni.
“Aspire to inspire before you expire,” is one of her most favorite quotes. Leave a legacy that changes an organization and leave it better then where it originally was. This is the motto that Paula lives by, and so far it looks like she is really working to achieve that goal.