Saturday, June 12, 2010

Wonderful Saturday!

As the state competition gets closer, I have felt the need to explore more of this beautiful state, after all I am asking for the job to represent it. I have been a long time fan of Time Out New York and its inexpensive and fun ideas and ways to spend a Saturday in New York. My roommate and I decided to try it out today and we had a wonderful time in Brooklyn! We spent the first part of today at Brooklyn's Botanical Gardens and I have to say it is one of the most beautiful places I have been to since I moved here. It is incredible how serene and quiet it is, while just outside the hustle and bustle of the city. It was their annual "Bee Day Party" and it was filled with honey and free admission to patrons. So I send out a special thank you to this quirky little insect for contributing to my beautiful Saturday!

Of course I had to take a picture of the Miss America rose!

The second part of my day consists of exploring the Upper West Side and partaking in a free dance class. I will admit I am far from an enthused exerciser, which does not mix well with the swimsuit potion of competition, so I have to find unique and fun things to do to stay in shape. What better way than dancing with some local seniors in a free dance class?

The Mr. New York pageant is tomorrow at 8pm!
It will be held at Spoon Theatre and will be benefitting the Children's Miracle Network. I have sent out e-mails and talked to many of you, but if you are at all interested in purchasing tickets please visit
I will be performing along with Claire Buffie, Miss Southeast New York and Keelie Sheridan, Miss Greater New York. Come out and be a part of the crowning of the first Mr.New York!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Aside from my platform and pageants...

I am also heavily involved in school. Upon entering LIM College, I learned they had never had a choir before, which has been my world since I was in first grade. So to remedy this situation, my friend Jen and I decided we would found LIM's first choir. We had a very successful beginning year filled with exciting performances, laughs, memories and even an award! A member of Ultimate Choir just e-mailed me and passed along a story she wrote about us for our school's online blog. As the Vice-President and Co-Founder, I wanted to take a brief moment and do some minor bragging and show off the members' hard work.

6/2/2010 - 3:06 PM

LIM's New Student Chorus

On April 9, 2010, an introduction from LIM College President Marcuse opened the official debut of LIM College’s student choir to the college faculty and staff at an All College Meeting. That was the choir’s first performance, and based on the raves that reached members of the choir by email, it will definitely not be the last. In fact, shortly thereafter the choir performed at a Student Life conference meeting. LIM College even bestowed the choir an academic award for its achievement in such a short time.

The LIM College uLtIMate Choir, as it has been named, has four members. Co-founders, Jennifer Daiches and Cassandra Franklin sought out an advisor to help create a club that would embrace their interest in singing and Advisor Joy Leslie stepped forward. Olivia Hotar and I joined the founders, enabling four-part harmony in the a cappella group. After struggling initially, members secured the assistance of Professor Wlodarczyk, who was teaching a course on appreciating music. Professor Wlodarczyk guided the choir in developing repertoire such as The Beatles “I Will” and Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours.”

Olivia Hotar is looking forward to singing for entering students during Welcome Week, and said, “I am so very excited about the performances in August. They are going to take a lot of preparation but they will be worth it when we blow people away."

To get involved with the choir in the 2010 Fall Semester, find our table at the student involvement fair, also called “club day” early in the term. Choir president, Jennifer Daiches said, “Next semester...we are hoping to expand our choir a little bit…giving us a larger selection of songs to perform. I hope that we will continue to give amazing and liberating performances.”

--Adriana Rivera

I know this is different from my usual posts, but I thought it was necessary to show what can happen from a simple idea. In some ways it correlates with what I preach about in my programs on bullying. If you give students the opportunity to participate or even create a group they are passionate about, most likely you will not see children exhibiting bullying behavior. Granted, bullying has thankfully never been an issue in this group, but I felt it was something important to remember. Involving your children in something positive that they are interested in can do a lot.

In other news, I picked up my evening gown from the tailors today, and I have to say it is one of the most stunning gowns I have ever laid eyes on. I feel truly blessed to have been given the opportunity to wear a garment I feel so beautiful in. I can't wait for my friends and family to see me wearing it on stage! If I could bottle my personality and make it into a garment, it would be this evening gown. Only 10 more days till Miss New York!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Hometown Support

I was so excited to receive an e-mail this morning stating an article had been published about me in my hometown, Garland, Texas. It's always nice to see people supporting you even when you're a thousand miles away. Although New York is my home now, I will always have Garland in my heart and feel truly blessed to have grown up there. Check out the article below, I'm so excited it mentions the Miss America program and my platform!

Hope you enjoy the article, I'm off to pick up my evening gown!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Take A Stand Program

I have been working hard the past few weeks to create my own 3 part program for my platform, Take A Stand: Standing Up Against Bullying. In the past, I had a special book I liked to read when explaining bullying to children, however I wanted to have a handout that would make it easy to remember our discussion long after I had left. Due to this need, I took the initiative to create my own pledge and bracelets to remind kids and adults the power of "taking a stand" against bullying. My bracelets are being produced as we speak and as soon as I get them I will post a picture for you all to see! I do however have a picture of my pledge, the first part of my 3 part pledge (as seen below).

The Take A Stand Pledge has four simple rules: Tell, Bystander, Kind, and Remember.
1. Pledge to tell an adult if I am bullied.
2. Pledge not to be a bystander if one of my friends is being bullied.
3. Pledge to always be kind to those around you.
4. Pledge to remember it is not your fault if you are bullied.

These are simple rules that I feel every child can understand and they fit perfectly with the book I read in each program that I mentioned earlier. Stop Picking On Me, by Pat Thomas is my favorite children's book on bullying. If you have not read it definitely pick it up for your children. It gives you the opportunity for an open forum to discuss this topic and it always excited the kids to be involved in my program. This is why it is the second part of my 3 part program.

I cannot wait to receive the last and final piece of my 3-tool program, the bracelets! As soon as I have them I will make another update.

Tonight we have mock interviews! Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

As I was completing my daily routine this morning of Regis & Kelly while reading through msn news, I decided to take a break to watch Demi Lovato's interview. I've listened to some of her music and thought she was very talented, but I didn't know much about her, aside from being a Disney Channel kid and coming from my home state of Texas. I was surprised to learn she had been bullied as a child, and from that experience has partnered with as a spokesperson. I checked out the website and it is actually a great resource for kids and parents. It has videos of victims speaking about their experiences, links to other anti-bullying websites, and much more, presented in a teen- friendly package.

When news hit of Phoebe Prince's death, the 15-year-old who committed suicide after being bullied, Lovato recorded a PSA on her Myspace Account telling everyone how important this issue is and where to get help. As an advocate and one time victim, I'm very impressed that Demi Lovato takes time to help those who are dealing with this issue. That is what I call a positive role model and a celebrity working to make a difference. Please check out the website to learn more about the organization.

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Megan Pledge

Megan Meier has recently been inspiring students through out the country. How you ask, by the legacy she left after her tragic death on October 17, 2006. The young 13-year-old was the victim of cyberbullying and took her own life after being rejected and verbally beat down by a "peer", who turned out to be a friend's mother, on myspace. Megan's mother, Tina Meier, started the Megan Meier Foundation in hopes that it would help others facing this issue. The mission is to "bring awareness, education and promote positive change to children, parents and educators in response to the ongoing bullying and cyberbullying in our children's daily environment".

Recently, the foundation has launched The Megan Pledge with help from
You can download each part of the pledge which includes a personal pledge, a teen cyber-safety guide, Megan's story, the polka dot remembrance ribbon, and more.

Please take a moment to read Megan's story and download the pledge, all of which can be accessed through the above like to stopcyberbullying's website.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Miss America's New Home!

Next January, the Miss America Organization will not only be celebrating its 90th anniversary, but also it's return to network television! MAO has signed a three-year contract with ABC and will be broadcast through 2013. I am so excited for this partnership! The organization has worked hard the last several years to re-brand and modernize the title of "Miss America" and this is another step in the right direction.

Here is the direct link to the press release to read more:

Friday, May 14, 2010

Catching Up!

I have officially concluded my first year as a college student!

Now I will have the full-time job of perfecting all parts of competition before Miss New York at the end of June. I will be taking a short trip to Texas tomorrow and while I'm there, will be picking up my evening gown!! I can't wait to try it on again and I want to thank Ashley and Jennifer from Lenz Boutique for their help in finding the perfect gown. Check out their website

Claire, Keelie and I had an amazing photo shoot by the Brooklyn Bridge and Times Square with Bianca Thomas. It was a blast and got a little crazy when tourists began to swarm and request their own pictures, but hey, that's all a part of the job!

I'm in the midst of getting in contact with my local representative and Governor David Paterson about Senate Bill No.S 1925-2003, the pending anti-bullying bill. When I return to New York I plan on making a visit to their offices to hopefully figure out who I need to contact.
In other news:
Congratulations to the state of Wisconsin for being the 43rd state to pass an anti-bullying law!

According to they are still waiting for "Michigan and New York to FINALLY get their law".

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

New York beginning to see the light!

While New York still has yet to pass any formal anti-bullying laws or put any specific programs in place, Mayor Bloomberg is beginning to take some action.

After vetoing the Dignity in All Schools Act (DASA) in 2004 and calling it "silly", the Mayor has finally begun to see that bullying and harassment truly does interfere with a child's ability to learn. Even though this is not a law or even an official program, it is a start. The initiative will require that teachers are educated on bullying and the signs of a child being bullied. Schools will also hang posters telling children how to report incidents as well as a leaflet they can take home to show parents.

I'm hoping this is just the beginning and New York will realize that this is a great start but not an ultimate solution to ending bullying in schools. Below is the link if you want to read further. Also, take a look at the sites I have linked about successful bullying and harassment programs.

I want to say thank you to representatives from Alabama who have recently adopted a formal anti-bullying law! They will be helping so many children in their state! To see bills up for discussion in New York visit

Post Spring Meeting Plans

Spring meeting felt like an absolute blur this past weekend. Claire, Keelie, Rene and I packed up our minivan and made our way to Albany. The trip was not without its exciting moments (almost getting run over) and I was able to meet a lot of the girls I will be competing along side in June. We began rehearsing our opening number which is WAY more dancing than I'm used to. I was so excited to hear the theme and what our opening number music will be, however I'm going to keep that under wraps. I don't want to spoil the surprise for anyone! We also had time to take a few pictures of all three of us during our lunch break.

Now it's time for me to get back to work! The Miss New York Organization did an excellent job this weekend and provided all of us with great constructive criticism and things we need to work on. I loved getting to see the other titleholders perform their talents and we had so much fun practicing our modeling walk! Only a few short months and we will all be right back in Albany getting ready to compete for Miss New York!!

Also, I will be volunteering this coming Saturday with NYC Cares at a local school helping children learn about the green movement. We will be doing eco-friendly activities and hopefully teaching them new things they didn't know. This is my first event with the organization and I am so excited!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Countdown to Spring Meeting

I have less than two weeks until I will be driving to Albany for spring meeting to turn in paperwork and start rehearsals for Miss New York! Before that though I will be incredibly busy. I will be attending an orientation for NYC Cares, a large volunteer organization in New York this Saturday. I can't wait to get involved in my community, I have missed that! I have attached a link to their webpage if you are interested in volunteering, which I highly recommend. I am also in the middle of applying as a volunteer with an anti-bullying group, so cross your fingers they accept!

We are also in the process of launching a website for Claire, Keelie and I. Claire Buffie, Miss Southeast New York, is doing a wonderful job with this and I can't wait to share it once it is up and running. It will give all of you the opportunity to read more about our platforms and what we are up to in the community, as well as pictures and links to various organizations.

I recently had a meeting with my director and we have nailed down my wardrobe for evening gown, swimsuit, and interview. I am excited to see everything coming together and am thankful for such an organized and supportive group of people I am with!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A brand new year, a brand new title!

It was a long day I have to say, but well worth it! I was crowned Miss Liberty 2010 along side two good friends Claire Buffie, Miss Southeast New York 2010 and Keelie Sheridan, Miss Greater NYC 2010.

It has been a whirlwind since, preparing for state and creating opportunities to work more on my platform. For those who do not know, my platform is Take A Stand: Standing Up Against Bullying. It is an issue I am passionate about and have personal experience with. Currently New York has not passed any anti-bullying legislation to have a set program in schools and I want to help change that! I will link several websites for those wanting to learn more about the topic and programs that are working hard to eliminate it.

I cannot believe in a few short months I will be competing for the title of Miss New York! I am so excited to be a part of the Miss America Organization and all of the wonderful things they stand for. It is going to be a fabulous year!