Madeline Holmes

Miss Jones County Outstanding Teen

Hometown: Clinton, MS

Hobbies: Singing, Reading, Photography, Playing tennis

School: Clinton High School

Scholastic Ambition: Pursue a degree in Chemistry, Pre-Med

Scholastic Honors: National Honor Society, 4.0 GPA, Latin I Award

Talent: Singing

Platform: Bridging the Gap:  Teens and the Elderly

What makes you special and unique? My love for music. I have been singing for years, and I have also played numerous instruments including the piano, guitar, drums, and the xylophone. If it is connected to music, I am already there.

What is the one thing about you that people you meet may not immediately realize? I am a HUGE Chemistry nerd! I love anything and everything that has to do with Chemistry.

Best advice you have ever received? My Latin teacher introduced me to the Latin phrase “ad astra per aspera” which means ‘to the stars through hardship.’ It continually reminds me to prevail through the hard times because something amazing will always be the outcome.

What can’t you live without? I cannot imagine life without my family (this includes my cat, Tasha!)

What is your biggest guilty pleasure? Sleeping really late!

What is your favorite movie genre and why? Romantic Comedies…they always make me feel happy.

Where do you see yourself in ten years? In ten years, I will have graduated high school, college, medical school, and will be starting a medical residency.

Most valuable lesson learned? Sisters before misters!! I’ve learned that my girlfriends will always be there for me.

Most valued role model (other than your mother) and why? My role model would be my cousin Alana Weston. In the fall of 2014, she was diagnosed with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer. Throughout her fight, she has kept an upbeat, positive spirit andan even stronger connection with her faith. She inspires me to stay positive and give God the reigns on life because he will ALWAYS lead you through your toughest battles.

What motivates you? Giving back to others

Greatest non-academic accomplishment other than winning your local title? I started a club at my high school called Bridging the Gap which is to promote connecting youth with the elderly. This year it has a membership of over 70 students…which makes it one of the largest clubs at the school.

Best compliment you have ever received? The best compliment I have ever received is “You look just like your mother,” and can I just say that is a compliment I will take ANY day because my mother is simply beautiful.

Secret wish or dream? To be a photographer for National Geographic Magazine

What is the funniest or most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you? I think the one of the most embarrassing moments in my life was on a family trip Disney World. We were eating in the Whispering Canyon Café located in the Fort Wilderness Lodge, and in that particular restaurant the wait staff is supposed to be “rude” to you. I asked a waiter where the bathroom was, and he rolled his eyes and pointed in the direction of the bathroom. Once I was back at my table, that same waiter found me and asked me loud enough for the tables around us to hear, “What color was the soap in the bathroom?” to check to see if I washed my hands…

What is one thing you’d like to try that is out of character for you? To go on a hot air balloon ride. I am TERRIFIED of heights, but I just know the view from the hot air balloon would be amazing!

What is your super power? I am very in touch with my emotions, so I am able to connect with my friends and help them feel better when they are having a bad day.

What is one important thing you have learned from being in the Miss Mississippi Program? There is definitely strength in numbers. I have had the opportunity to meet numerous girls who are all different from me, but are so amazing in their own way. It has also provided me with connections to help expand my platform “Bridging the Gap.”

Describe yourself in one word. Compassionate

A Fun Family Fact? We love Disney World! We have been nearly every year of my life, sometimes twice a year!

Please write a short essay (2 or 3 paragraphs) describing yourself to the people viewing the website. Let people know who you really are. Keep in mind the questions you’ve already been asked and include other things that you would like people to know about you.

While the rest of the world was anxiously awaiting a new millennium, in November 1999 my parents were welcoming Madeline Marshall Holmes into their world. I was named after my grandfather, Marshall. He was named after his mother’s (my great grandmother) maiden name. This same woman will be turning 100 years old in July of 2017, and she is part of the inspiration for my platform.

As a Junior at Clinton High School, I have been involved in many activities such as show choir, a musical production, student council, and my high school tennis team. One of my biggest passions though, is singing, especially in my church’s praise band. I grew up singing in choir at my church. When the opportunity presented itself for me to become a part of my praise band, I could not have been more honored to help lead worship for my youth.

Outside of school and church, I spend my time reading or taking photos. When I was in the 3rd grade, I discovered my love for J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, and can I tell you my love for that series has grown up with me. I love anything and everything related to Harry Potter! As for photography, I started just a couple of years ago by taking pictures of my brother during his baseball games, and my enjoyment of the hobby grew from there. This year I have been given opportunities to take photos during school pep rallies as well asgetting to stand on the side lines and photograph my football team during their games.

Please write a short essay (2 or 3 paragraphs) explaining your passion for your platform and your stance on the subject. Be sure to name your platform and give a brief explanation of its purpose as well.

What could a 17-year old possibly have in common with a 77-year old?  You might be pleasantly surprised!  In my own life, I am uniquely blessed to still have 2 great-grandmothers, ages 90 and 99.  They are able to live with my grandparents but not all elderly people are this fortunate.  Each day, I pass a nursing home on my way into town.  It is a constant visual reminder that there are many residents who live inside those walls, who never get to leave and need the interaction and attention that can only be provided by outside influences.  It is through my personal family experiences and my involvement with a local civic club that I chose my platform to promote throughout my school and my community.

I am the founder and President of “Bridging the Gap” at Clinton High School.  This is a club for 10-12 grade students who share a common interest in serving the elderly, specifically nursing homes, in our community.  Each month, we share organized activities at a nursing home that we have adopted for the semester.  We play games, help with crafts, share music, or just provide much-needed conversation to the residents. Additionally, we collect items to donate to the residents and help with special projects set forth by the activities director.

Research shows strong ties between generations results in psychological, social, and emotional benefits.  Teens gain respect for others, life-skills, and cultivate kindness and compassion.  Elders receive companionship, intellectual stimulation, and the chance to feel useful.  “Bridging the Gap” provides this opportunity…making a difference in the lives of both people.  As Mississippi’s Outstanding Teen, I would be given a much larger audience with which to spread my message.  My goal would be to see “Bridging the Gap” chapters at every middle school and high school in the state of Mississippi. There is power in numbers and I can only imagine what we can do together to honor these precious individuals.