As the reality sank in that she had just captured the Miss Mississippi USA title, University of Southern Mississippi senior Myverick Garcia had a sobering thought: “Oh man, I hope I’m not one of those girls that cry.”
Right on cue, Garcia shed tears of unbridled joy after being crowned the winner on Saturday, Nov. 5 at Harrah’s Events Center in Tunica, Miss. After finishing as the first runner-up in last year’s pageant, Garcia bested 29 other contestants to secure the state title in her second try. She will represent Mississippi at the Miss USA 2012 pageant next June in Las Vegas.
“Last year everything went right and this year nothing went right,” said Garcia, who transferred to Southern Miss from Jones County Junior College. “On top of that, the girls this year were outstanding. I felt I was average. Apparently not, because God had other things in mind.”
Garcia, 22, is majoring in biological sciences and also works as a dental assistant at Dental Group of Ellisville. She hopes to eventually pursue a career in dentistry. Along with the Miss Mississippi USA crown, she took home a $57,600 scholarship from Lindenwood University of St. Charles, Mo.
When asked about her long-term goals, Garcia said, “Come down off Cloud Nine and finish out school. Maybe take my new title and all my benefits on some mission trips with my church. May even try out to be a Disney character. This is all so exciting.”
A Hattiesburg, Miss., native, Garcia attended Forrest County Agricultural High School. She is the daughter of James and Tina Gerlach.