Mariangela Avila

 

Age:19 | Height: 4’10″
Hometown: Calgary, AB

 

One small girl, with very big dreams is a phrase that would describe Mariangela. She is ambitious, strong, optimistic, independent and driven.  Mariangela was born in Puerto La Cruz, Venezuela and lived there until she was eight years old.

At that time she moved to Calgary, Alberta along with the rest of her family, and has lived there ever since. As the oldest child she is always striving to set a good example for her younger siblings.

Mariangela is currently enrolled at the University of Calgary, pursing a Bachelor of Science degree and hopes to be accepted in Medicine shortly after graduating. She would like to specialize in either Cardiology or Obstetrics.

Mariangela has always felt a very strong vocation for helping others and she dreams of someday being remembered as a hero. As a result of this, volunteering has been a very important part of her life.

She has dedicated her time to important events such as CIBC’s Breast Cancer Run for the Cure and, Scotiabank’s Aid’s Walk for Life. One thing that Mariangela is extremely passionate about is donating blood.

She believes that this is something that is so easy yet important for us to take part in therefore, she is a member of her University’s Red Cross Club where she promotes donating and provides updates on mobile clinics.  As well, you may find Mariangela on the worldwide database for the One Match Stem and Blood Marrow Network.

During her free time you would probably see her either at the gym, sleeping, or having fun with friends and family.  She has become very interested in learning about “clean” eating as well as ways to incorporate super foods into her diet. Mariangela is a believer that what is on the outside is good representation of how we are on the inside. One of her short-term goals is to prepare her body as if she were to compete in a fitness competition.

The one quality Mariangela admires most in people is their ability to smile, she believes that all of us will have to face tough times at some point or another but what is most important is what you learn and how much stronger you come out in the end. She is very optimistic about life and believes that all her dreams can come true as long as she works hard and sets her mind to it. After all, everything is very much mind over matter.

Sponsored by: Calgary West Soccer Centre, Benchmark Projects Ltd., Family and Friends

Languages spoken fluently

I can read, write, and speak Spanish and English fluently. These are two languages that I engage in on a daily basis and in the next few years I would love to become fluent in Italian.

What are your interests and what do you enjoy doing the most?

As I continue to grow as a person, I find that my interest are often either changing or expanding. However, one interest that has stuck throughout my entire life has been a desire to help people in need. For me, that intense desire to support other individuals and being of aid during a struggle ultimately shapes who I am and what I believe. Influenced by this interest, I strive to donate blood approximately every 56 days with the Canadian Blood Services, and I am registered with their One Match Stem Cell and Marrow Network program. Aside from that, as I have matured I have also developed an increasing fascination in educating myself about “clean” eating as well as incorporating super foods into my diet. I believe that what is on the outside is a representation of how we are on the inside therefore, fitness and healthy living is not only something I am captivated by but also a necessity. Other than that, I believe that the rest of my interests are common to other people my age and older. Activities that I enjoy are of course, travelling, spending time with friends and family, going to movies, catch up sessions with friends, going dancing (I definitely like to party and have fun), listening to music, the feeling I get after a good work out, camping, volunteering, and recently I have started to enjoy cooking. Basically, any situation in which I am actively interacting with others is one I will enjoy.

List any special training you have had (music, art, drama, dance, etc.) 

Growing up I took several acting classes and actually made into an improvisation competition, also I participated in school plays like the Wizard of Oz. I have taken a speed-reading course, dance classes, CPR, babysitting, etc. The major training I am receiving right now is in fitness from my wonderful trainer WBFF Pro, Bree Lind, as well, from being a part of Miss Universe Canada I am acquiring new skills on walking, leadership, interviews, and poise.

In what sports, if any, have you participated?

As a child I participated in tennis and swimming, then in junior high I was on the junior volleyball team and now that I am older I wish I would have stuck to any sport for longer than I did. I love playing uncompetitive soccer and as a young adult in order to stay fit, I like to work out, lift weights as well as attend fitness classes such as Zumba, Kickboxing and Hot Yoga.

Name one person, other than your parents, who has had the most influence on your life. Why? 

I am so grateful to come from a family where not only my parents but also members from my extended family are people that I admire tremendously. Their examples of coming together in unity, being courageous, determined, and hard working are qualities that continue to influence my life. My family has taught me to believe in my dreams, and to be strong and fearless. They have proven the importance of family and this is something I wish for everyone to feel.

I am also influence by several other people, one of which was a former Miss Venezuela and a third runner up at the Miss Universe Pageant. Eva Ekvall, aside from her involvement in these pageants, was also a news anchor, author, mother, wife and a cancer advocate. She is no longer with us but, in her 28 years of life and especially during the time she fought breast cancer, she set the record high for being someone with superior internal strength, raising awareness as well as being optimistic. For her ability to smile while enduring such a hard battle after having just given birth to her first and only daughter, the strength and positive outlook that Eva Ekvall had, has definitely impacted my life. I know that there are many other people that also deserve being acknowledged for their strength and it is those people, the fighters, the people that tend to leave the biggest imprint on my life.

What is your proudest personal accomplishment (other than participating in this pageant)? 

Until now my proudest personal accomplishment has been getting into University right after finishing High School. What makes me exceptionally proud about this is that to me, it means that I am on the right track to achieving my dreams. I am also very proud of who I have become and how I have dealt with life experiences. I am proud to see some of the characteristics I admire most of other people develop naturally in myself.

What is the most interesting or unique thing that has ever happened to you and/or what is the most interesting thing about you? 

The most unique thing that has ever happened to me was right before entering a dentist appointment; I was hit by car from behind just like in the scene from the movie Superbad. Thankfully I was not hurt but for some reason instead of being shocked I found the situation to be very funny and my mom could not understand why.

I think that he most interesting thing about me is my way of thinking. I am the type of person who loves to share my opinion but at the same time I am very accepting and respectful of other peoples thoughts and interest. I think this is interesting about me because although I am in constant thought, I am also very easy going, and open-minded.

What is your career ambition and what are you doing or plan to do to accomplish that goal? 

As I have mentioned before, my career ambition is to continue studying. I would like to be graduated from Medicine and specialize in one of two very different fields that interest me, which are, either cardiology or obstetrics. Currently, I am a Bachelor of Science student and my plan is to graduate and take the Medical College Admission Test, or MCAT. Shortly after, I would like to be accepted into Medical school at a credited University in Canada.

What would be your “dream job” in life?

My “dream job” in life would involve for me to have my own private practice but also travel parts of the world a few months throughout the year. I would like to use medical knowledge/services to provide to less fortunate people. I hope to create a non-profit foundation and would also like to be actively involved in existing charities such as SOS Children’s Villages, Save the Children, IAVI, RAIN, and Canadian Blood Services. Someday I would like to be asked to be a public/ inspirational speaker to kids and teenagers about work that I have done.

Are you currently a student?  If yes, where?  Area of study:

I am currently a second year student at the University of Calgary pursing a Bachelor of Biological Science degree.

Are you currently employed? If yes, what is your occupation?

Yes, currently I am employed as a receptionist/ key holder at the Calgary West Soccer Centre.

Describe where you were raised and what your childhood was like.

I was born in Venezuela and I lived there until I was 8 years old, then I moved to Calgary, Alberta for my parents work.  I have always lived in Calgary and my childhood was a very happy one. I got to enjoy my grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, etc., while still living in Venezuela and here in Canada I grew up surrounded by my parents and two younger siblings, Isabella (14) and Adrian (9). I have been very lucky to live an incredible childhood in which I was, and continue to be surrounded by unconditional love and support. Being the oldest in the family has been very good to me because having younger siblings is extremely fun to come home to. There is never a boring moment in my house. The only thing that I have missed growing up is having more of my family close as the majority of them live in Venezuela.

List any interesting or unusual jobs you may have had. 

A few years ago with the support of my family I started my own company called M2I clothing, it had a website and was registered with Moneris. This was very exciting for me, I would meet with company representatives of William Rast, Joes, etc., to pick out which of the jeans I wanted to order, and I got to be one of the first to see the upcoming collections. With this experience I got to explore my marketability and business running skills at a young age, it was a good challenge and I learned a lot about myself.

List any volunteering you have done.

I have volunteered with CIBC’s Breast Cancer, Run for the Cure event in which I was team leader at the Eau Claire registration session. I also volunteered with Scotiabank’s Aid’s Walk for Life, helping with food and water distribution to participants. As well, I am a proud blood donator, and I am on the database for the One Match Stem and Blood Marrow Network, I think that this is important to promote and I do so by being a member of the Red Cross U of C Club. In addition I have volunteered at events with the Venezolanos in Calgary Association, I was part of the Emerging Leaders Program during my first year at University and I have been an orientation guide at the University of Calgary’s Open House in 2011.

What is your most unusual talent?

My most unusual talent, according to my parents, is my ability to inspire people, however, in my opinion; my most unusual talent remains to be found.

Where is the most interesting place you have been?

Every place that I have gone to has been very interesting in its own way. Last summer I was able to travel to Philadelphia with my family, which was an exciting experience because my dad actually went to school there and had wanted to go back for a while. Being able to share that with him was nice especially because he told us a lot of good and bad stories as we drove around local places. During that same trip we stopped in New York, it was my first time going there but thanks to Hurricane Irene our outings were very limited.

What do you hope to be doing in ten years?

In ten years I will be 29 and for sure I would like to have graduated Medicine and be starting to work in my field of specialization. I hope to be living in a house or apartment of my own or perhaps with a significant other, enjoying the process of decorating it into my/our own style. If I was to be married and the time was to be right, perhaps start a family. However, I think that only time will tell and destiny will take its course.

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