MUKSEGON, MI – Spartans or Wolverines? Upper Peninsula or Lower Peninsula? Lake Michigan or Lake Huron?
The answer to the first question is simple for newly crowned Miss Michigan Vivian Zhong, who graduated from the University of Michigan in 2019.
Watch the above video of MLive’s exclusive interview with the new State Ambassador to hear the rest of Zhong’s answers to more classic Michigan this-or-that questions.
Zhong, 24, of Northville, was crowned Miss Michigan 2021 on Saturday during the scholarship contest at the Frauenthal Center in downtown Muskegon. She earned the title, a $10,000 academic scholarship and the opportunity to participate in the Miss America 2021 program in December.
She has dedicated her platform to promoting her social impact initiative, “Golden Warriors: Fight Like a Kid,” and fundraising for childhood cancer research. The new state ambassador said she wants to advocate for finding more non-invasive cancer treatment options for children.
“I want to work on spreading the word that there is a great need for fundraising for childhood cancer research so that we can find more non-invasive treatment options for these children,” Zhong told MLive Sunday’s interview. “We must not forget these children.”
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Zhong stole the show and impressed the audience during the two-day Miss Michigan competition. She and the 21 other candidates competed in a private interview, a question on stage, evening wear, a statement about social impact and talent.
For her talent, Zhong wore a red floor-length dress and played a classical piano solo from Frederic Chopin’s ‘Fantaisie Impromptu Opus 66’.
Miss Michigan 2019 Mallory Rivard crowned Zhong after serving the role for two years due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Zhong said being Miss Michigan isn’t about winning the crown, it’s about using the crown to help others.
“I think it’s so important to see that this organization isn’t just about beauty, it’s not just about you,” she said. “It’s about serving your community. It’s about what you can do with the crown.”
Read all of MLive’s coverage of the Miss Michigan 2021 competition here.
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Our favorite images from the Miss Michigan 2021 competition
Relive Miss Michigan’s emotional crowning moments, plus images of winners from the past 2 decades 2
Miss Michigan 2021 Vivian Zhong: ‘I’m just floored’