A new Miss USA will be crowned Sunday during the two-hour event taking place in Las Vegas for the second year in a row.
MISS USA 2017: Miss District of Columbia, Kára McCullough!
New Jersey's Verg and the women representing Florida, North Dakota, Hawaii and CT said they have faced challenges and opportunities as immigrants.
In this May 11, 2017, photo, Miss Hawaii USA Julie Kuo competes during a preliminary competition for Miss USA in Las Vegas. McCullough was asked whether she thinks that affordable health care for all USA citizens is a right or a privilege.
A Fil-American beauty is among the contestants hoping to win this year's Miss USA crown. After working for so many days and participating in the preliminary competition, the 51 contestants of the Miss USA beauty pageant are all set for the grand finale.More news: Pentagon chief: USA studying Moscow's Syria safe zone plan
"I'm extremely thankful for this opportunity", she said after the event.
McCullough was born in Naples, Italy, and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
A scientist named Kara McCullough, who represents the District of Columbia, is this year's Miss USA 2017.
The five finalists in the competition were asked questions about the pros and cons of social media, women's rights, and issues affecting the American youth. Her answer during the question portion of the pageant that healthcare is not a right, but a privilege that comes with having a job... controversial to say the least.
McCullough's office at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission focuses on emergency preparedness.More news: Truex Jr. living sublimely after Kansas Speedway win
Wellentin, 24, who wants to be a middle school teacher after she completes a student-teaching requirement, said her experiences have taught her to not take no for an answer. As for McCullough, she used her crowning moment to point directly at the camera and give a shout-out to America, telling viewers that they can do anything they put their minds to and to believe in themselves.
McCullough also took hits for saying she does not call herself a feminist, preferring "equalism", before adding "Women, we are just as equal as men, especially in the workplace". "And the thing you're going to really hate to hear me say: We only need one of you".
The pageant included a field of five new immigrants who spoke on air about the importance of diversity - as if to refute US President Donald Trump's less than welcoming stand toward some immigrants and refugees. Verg and the women representing Florida, North Dakota, Hawaii and CT described the challenges and opportunities they faced as immigrants.
Verg told The Associated Press days ahead of the competition that she and her parents immigrated from India to the USA with only $500 in their pockets when she was 4 years old.More news: West Virginia reporter Daniel Heyman jailed after questioning Health Secretary Tom Price
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