Alice Su, Miss Australia International 2017, recently visited Mercy to share a message of female empowerment with the hopes of starting young women “on a journey of self-confidence that will last all throughout your lives.”
About 50 girls gathered after school to meet Alice, wear her tiara and sash, and listen to her personal story about becoming the first Asian-Australian to represent Australia for the Miss International Pageants.
While she’s not competing, the 27-year-old Alice volunteers her time speaking with young women about challenging the stereotype of what beauty means with the hope of inspiring girls to connect with themselves and others on a deeper level. This includes the cultural, academic and social expectations that can impact young people’s self expression and their experience of being happy and fulfilled.
Her message to the young women of Mercy: “Self-confidence is a journey that comes from the inside and not from the ways society makes young women question themselves about who they are.”
“You have the power to define your self-confidence with your thoughts and your words,” Alice said. “I really would love for you to start that journey today, right when you walk out that door.”
According to Alice, that journey begins each day when you wake up. Before her talk ended, Alice had the girls line up in front of the mirror and look themselves in the eyes. She had them all repeat several times, “This is me and I matter.”
“This was important because I want the girls to see themselves and to know that self-confidence begins with being comfortable with all your features and that these details are what make them beautiful,” she said. “There are so many stereotypes about beauty and I want these girls to honor their desire for self-expression, which can be suppressed by society and cultural expectations.”