Perkins competes for state DYW title

By HASKEL BURNS,

Oak Grove High School rising senior Emmie Perkins is among 29 participants competing for college scholarships in Meridian this week in the statewide Mississippi Distinguished Young Women competition.

Preliminary competition will be held Thursday and Friday, with the final Top 10 contest held on Saturday. The participants will compete in talent, physical fitness and self-expression before going through an interview.

Perkins, who is the daughter of Lori and David Perkins, will perform “Rise Up” by Andra Day for her part in the talent contest.

Perkins claimed the title of Distinguished Young Woman of Lamar County back in January, winning out over seven other Oak Grove High School juniors to earn a spot in the statewide competition. 

“I have been working so hard for so long, so for that to finally pay off was just incredible,” she said. “I had the opportunity to share the stage with so many wonderful women.

“It was an amazing experience.”

The statewide competition also feature an autograph party Tuesday; community service at Aldersgate Retirement Community and Brookdale Retirement Community; “A Distinguished Night on the Red Carpet” social event; and dinner with the judges at the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Experience.

Other Pine Belt girls competing are Brooke Patterson, Miss Forrest County and Myla Cox, Miss Petal. 

More than $28,000 in cash tuition scholarships will be awarded at the Meridian program, and the winner will advance to the Distinguished Young Women National Finals in Mobile, Alabama, in June 2019 following her high school graduation.

Perkins, who hopes to double major in vocal performance and pre-med sciences at Vanderbilt University, is a member of the Hattiesburg Junior Auxiliary Crown Club and has won numerous awards in acting and vocal performance. She is active in Oak Grove’s drama program, National Honor Society, Junior Civitan Club and Spanish Club.