Students at St. Andrew's Schools had a special visitor on November 14. Penelope Ng Pack, Miss Hawai'i 2018, spent the entire morning with girls at The Priory's Lower and Upper schools and boys at The Prep.
Ng Pack's visit to campus coincides with National Young Readers Week. Her platform as a titleholder in the MisAmerica program is childhood literacy and she enjoyed reading some of her favorite stories to the young students during her visit to classrooms. She's also a goodwill ambassador for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, which partners with the Miss America Organization. Locally, Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children is part of this network.
"Spending time with the students at St. Andrew's inspired me to continue to strive for the summit – and beyond – in terms of what I hope to accomplish as Miss Hawaiʻi, such as inspiring future Miss Hawaiʻis and especially readers through my social impact initiative, 'Page by Page: Helping Kids Read to Succeed,'" she said. "Each student exemplified a helpful citizen in that they were kind to me and toward one another, engaged, thoughtful, helpful and respectful!"
During her visit to The Priory's second grade class, Ng Pack read "The Paperbag Princess" to the excited group of students. A little later, over in the The Prep's second grade class, Ng Pack read "Magic Mail Open Carefully." In both The Priory and The Prep's kindergarten classes, she shared some of her favorite books with the students and in Mrs. Schick's class, she shared a special handmade book with the kindergarteners. The book contained photos of Ng Pack when she was a student in Mrs. Schick's preschool class.
In The Priory's freshman math class, Ng Pack talked with students about the importance of sharp math skills. She shared that she is currently studying for the GMAT as part of the application process to pursue her MBA, and joked that students should not forget everything they learned about geometry once they have finished taking the class. When asked by a student why math was one of her favorite subjects, Ng Pack said she liked the fact that there is always a solution to a problem and that you can use the tools available – such as the geometry theorems – to find the answer.
Other highlights of her visit included a crown activity. Ng Pack allowed the children to try on one of the crowns she won in a preliminary pageant competition as they introduced themselves to her and shared something that made them special. She also talked about what it was like to be in the Miss Hawaiʻi and Miss America pageants and encouraged students to continue reading, to study hard and to be kind and respectful to one another. She did an Instagram live with The Priory's Lower School students during their recess and signed autographs for the girls and their teachers.
Her trip concluded with a visit to The Priory's senior class, along with eighth graders who were shadowing the high school students for the day. Each of the students introduced themselves and briefly shared their educational goals. Ng Pack reminded the seniors to finish strong because end-of-year grades are important to the college process. She spoke about how participating in the Miss America program garnered her scholarships that will help toward graduate school. In describing what it's like to compete for the title of Miss America, Ng Pack explained that it took her two tries to win the title of Miss Hawaiʻi. After falling short the first time, Ng Pack said she took time to reflect, make a decision about whether or not it was a goal she still wanted to pursue, and then re-dedicated herself to pursuing her dream and worked even harder to achieve it.
As she completed her visit to St. Andrew's Schools, Ng Pack said, "I hope the students will remember the four points of the crown: service, scholarship, style and success, and the message from the book 'The Paper Bag Princess.' The book's message reminds us that it doesn't matter what you wear or what you look like. True princesses and princes are defined by how they act and treat others."