NaFo grad finds success in academics, pageant

dwalker@fortmilltimes.comJuly 23, 2013 

— Caitlin Lindberg graduated from Nation Ford High School in 2011 and has continued to shine both academically and as a pageant representative of South Carolina.

“I’m about to be a junior in the Calhoun Honors College at Clemson,” she said last week. “It feels like the past two years have flown by. Clemson is such a great school and has been a wonderful experience.”

She was named to the university’s Dean’s List for the Spring 2013 semester, having met the 3.5 grade-point average requirement.

“Academics have always been top priority for me, because I know that an education is the key to success. In high school, I had a 4.9 on a 5.0 scale, and now in college, I have a 3.76 on a 4.0 scale as a double major,” Lindberg said.

“However, I am also excited to graduate and move forward with my dream,” she said. She wants to attend Louisiana State University Medical School in New Orleans and become a pediatric ear, nose and throat specialist.

In addition to her academic success, Lindberg was named National American Miss South Carolina on June 16. She will compete in November in the National American Miss pageant in Anaheim, Calif.

“This is my first state and national pageant. I honestly only chose to enter because my best friend encouraged me to,” Lindberg said. “I couldn’t imagine that someone with no pageant experience could win at the state level.

“I was shocked and so happy when I found out I won Miss South Carolina. I know that win or lose, I will leave the national pageant with unforgettable memories and new friends. Performing on stage at the state pageant in Columbia has given me confidence to speak up more in class and to be more outgoing.”

Lindberg believes that extracurricular involvement has prepared her for the professional world, and the additional responsibilities improve time management.

“Activities like National American Miss give me confidence and experience dealing with pressure and public speaking,” she said. “I feel that these qualities will be useful throughout my life and career.”

Lindberg said it’s challenging to balance school, work, volunteering, and down time. “I have learned that the best way to succeed is to plan things in advance and finish school work early,” said Lindberg.

With her newfound spotlight, Lindberg wants to encourage others to try new hobbies and activities.

“From my pageant success, I hope that people are inspired to take risks and strive for their dream, even if it seems impossible to reach. You can’t succeed if you don’t try,” said Lindberg.

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