Julia De Penti, a senior at Cleveland State University, was crowned U.S. American Miss Ohio during the 2023 state-wide pageant.
De Penti, a major in communication sciences and disorders with a minor in neuroscience, has participated in National American Miss, Miss Collegiate America, Miss North America and International United Miss.
“I’ve been doing pageants for about three and a half years now,” she said. “I also have a pageant coach that helps keep me connected with the different pageant systems.”
At the end of summer in 2022, U.S. American Miss held a photo contest for a free state entry fee — which De Penti also won.
Following her win, she will participate in and help promote the U.S. American Miss anti-bullying platform, Crown Cares. While participating in Crown Cares, De Penti will travel to local schools and youth programs to encourage anti-bullying education.
She plans to blend her eating disorder education program, ED on Ed: Education on Eating Disorders, with Crown Cares over the next year.
“65% of eating disorders approximately are started from bullying cases,” she said. “So I’m really excited to be able to bring Crown Cares into my eating disorder education.”
ED on Ed focuses on educating students on eating disorders — what they look like, what recovery looks like and what health conditions are attributed to eating disorders.
De Penti currently works with high schools and middle schools to educate students, but wants to adapt her program to work with younger children in hopes of preventing future eating disorders.
She is also working to get eating disorder education mandated in schools through the Ohio Department of Education.
In July of 2023, she will compete for the national title of U.S. American Miss. She will return, whether or not she receives the national title, for the U.S. American Miss Ohio competition to crown her successor next January.