Before I tell you about the inspiring personal development nights and journey the Entrants enjoyed in April and May, let me tell you a bit about myself and why I chose to enter the Miss Wagga Wagga Quest 2022. My name is Molly Burley and I grew up in Wagga Wagga and I am the 5th generation of my family to grow up in Wagga Wagga. I went to Henschke Primary School and Kildare Catholic College. After completing Year 12 I wasn’t sure what career path I wanted to take and at a last minute decision I enrolled at TAFE and completed a Diploma in Visual Arts. After giving university a go and trying to study online, I am now doing a traineeship studying Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care and working at Inspire Early Learning Centre.
I continue to practice my painting and drawing, and photography. I am also developing an interest in music and am interested in learning the piano. I am excited to be involved in the Miss Wagga Wagga Quest and can’t wait to see how much I’ll grow over the year. I know it’s going to be a big year but I’m ready to be pushed out of my comfort zone and improve on myself. One aspect of the Quest that really warms my heart is that we get to raise much needed funds for our local beneficiaries.
Now about our personal development sessions leading up to our Launch Evening.
Our first personal development night consisted of learning about dressing for an event and different dress codes. We were educated about what is meant for each dress code, eg. black tie, formal, cocktail, business etc. We learnt how the way we present ourselves informs the people around us of what to think, it is the first impression and the first impression always counts. We gained an understanding of how if we dress in something that is comfortable and compliments our body shape, and something we are confident wearing, the confidence will shine through and make it easier to present ourselves to others. We were also given some helpful tips like "less is more" and that it's better to be overdressed than underdressed, and how to stay classy and elegant.
Also during this session we were given the opportunity to get an insight on how to write a speech and deliver it. The Entrants and myself were informed about what needs to be included in a speech and how to structure it, as well as some tips and tricks on what makes a great speech. We then had the opportunity to talk about a topic on the spot for one minute, which allowed us to have a starting point on what we needed to work on leading up to our launch night in May. This exercise also allowed us to see how the different tips and tricks of public speaking can actually work.
For our second personal development session we enjoyed a lovely lunch at The Roundabout Restaurant where we were taught dining and table etiquette. I found this session quite enjoyable as it allowed me to learn about correct etiquette, and cleared up any misunderstandings around dining. During this session my heart was warmed knowing the chef was willing to accommodate to my unusual dietary requirements, this allowed me to achieve a sense of belonging in the group.
During this session we also learnt about how to be Entrants in the Miss Wagga Wagga Quest and what is required of us in regards to organising fundraising events as well as how everything will come together in terms of fundraising. We were also informed about the work done behind the scenes in relation to the social media side of the Miss Wagga Wagga Quest.
Our next personal development night was centred around having a healthy mind and body. We talked about how eating well will help us to have a healthy mind as well as a healthy body and the influences they have on each other. We shared ideas and tips on how to keep a healthy mind and how important it is to reserve down time for just yourself. The Entrants and I participated in a bonding activity that required us to write down something positive about each of the other Entrants, and we now all have a piece of paper with these positive affirmations about ourselves which I know I’ll treasure from this Quest. Lastly we all joined in on a group exercise session together.
Our last personal development night was having the opportunity to practice a live radio and television interview. We were enlightened with some tips on how to prepare for different types of interviews. We then all took turns to have a radio and television interview, and got to listen to them together with some feedback as to where we can improve for next time. This was a very interesting and nerve-wracking exercise, however it pushed me out of my comfort zone and has prepared me for the year to come.
All these personal development sessions prepared us for our big night, our launch night!
On the night of our launch we all delivered a speech on what Wagga Wagga means to us, which was very scary. We all took in turns delivering our speeches in between the different courses of our lovely meal that night. The night also required us to mingle with people we had never met before and meet some very important people. We got to use some of the things we learned at our personal development sessions that led up to this evening, for example dress codes, speech writing and public speaking, table and dining etiquette. The night had some unexpected events happen as the fire alarm went off and we had to evacuate the venue not only once, but twice. This made for a good laugh and memory of the evening.
I would like to say a big thank you to Ted and Olive Boutique for sponsoring me to go on this wonderful journey.
I hope you all enjoyed reading about our personal development sessions and preparation leading into the start of the Quest.
- Molly Burley
Miss Wagga Wagga Quest 2022 Entrant