You could say that, in a way, I fell into the world of media.
While I loved the idea of storytelling, film and photography as a child, I always felt conditioned that if I loved and was good at Math and Science, I should pursue a career in that path…. this was the original plan…. but you know how life works!
In grade 12, I had been looking for scholarships and came across “Miss Teen Canada” which advertised large scholarship opportunities. Figured – why not? Competed as a bit of a joke, knowing all the while I was planning on studying biomedical engineering versus the women there who wanted this opportunity to launch modeling or acting careers. Next thing I knew, I won Miss Teen Ontario, Miss Teen Canada and placed in the Top 5 at the international level. I didn’t care for the “pageant” side of it, and still feel reservations about the objectification of women, but I fell in love with the community of (surprisingly) supportive women that took part in them.
The next time I “fell” into media was in sports. As a former athlete, I got involved in the Sports Business Club at the University of Toronto, which led to an opportunity as a guest panelist on TSN’s Off The Record. Following that, I received a message inviting me to audition as the new In-Arena Host for the Toronto Maple Leafs, where I worked for two seasons while completing my engineering degree and signing to a modeling agency.
From there, I’ve had the privilege to host a number of sporting events including the Rogers Cup, IIHF World Junior Championships, Toronto Pan and Para Pan American Games, Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL) All-Star Game, CFL Grey Cup Celebrations and more.
In 2017, I moved onto work back in the corporate world for adidas then a consulting firm…. until I took a leap of faith, running, then winning, for Miss Universe Canada. Miss Universe had been acquired and had been going through a rebranding phase. One that was focused on a woman’s intellectualism, career goals, philanthropy, athleticism, “confidence” rather than physical attributes.
Truthfully, I joined Miss Universe Canada with the challenge of trying to change it from the inside – to perhaps spark a conversation around breaking stereotypes.
It was a whirlwind of a year, from placing in the Top 10 at Miss Universe, to trying to use this platform to empower women in STEM, to getting appendicitis part-way through my year to inspiring my latest project of producing a documentary series about life for women around the world.
All the while, I missed the engineering and technology side of my life. I joined a Toronto-based tech start-up while still pursuing some side-projects in entertainment, including the documentary.
In November of 2018, I was recruited one again to the world of entertainment by CityTV to be a co-host for the Canadian National Broadcast of the 2019 Grammy Red Carpet Coverage show.
Currently, I am a correspondent for CityTV (specifically Breakfast Television and Cityline), a content creator on Instagram & a growing YouTube channel, a (albeit!) new actress and in the midst of producing the documentary series – what I consider to be my baby.
I don’t know where the media side will lead to, but am grateful for the opportunities, people and stories that have been told along the way.