Describing herself as an ugly duckling who eventually metamorphosed into an elegant swan, Miss Universe Denmark 2015 Cecilie Wellemberg is now helping people who have low self esteem. A beauty with dedication and razor sharp focus, Cecilie will soon embark on a journey of a lifetime which she hopes will conclude with a victory. Here, she talks to Missosology about her struggles, her views about the current events and what she thinks about the Miss Universe pageant.
1.) Tell us something about yourself, where you grew up, your likes and dislikes and your hobbies?
I was born and raised in Copenhagen, Denmark with my older brother, and mother and father, and have lived here my entire life. Being the only girl, I was treated as a princess growing up by my family, and my protective brother. I was very tall, and very thin, with big lips growing up, so I was incredibly self conscious. Fortunately, that worked out well for me in regards to my career. I became interested in fitness because that was a way to build muscles and have a healthier body. Now I use my confidence to help to help other women feel better with themselves by using my experience and my story, I speak in front of large groups of people. Just recently I visited Rome and told my story to a group of 10,000 to 15,000 individuals.
2.) If you are to choose, what kind of national costume would you like for Miss Universe and why?
I would pick the swan, which is my national costume, coincidentally! The swan is the national bird of Denmark. Based off of the classic “Hans Christian Anderson” fairytale, there once was an ugly duckling, who was bullied, and outcast by the other beautiful yellow ducklings… Until suddenly the duckling transformed into a beautiful swan. The story of evolution and progression, is a similar story to my own.
3.) What do you think will be your advantage at the Miss Universe pageant?
My advantage will be that I am very self reliant. I am always watching “self-help” documentaries, reading self-help books, and trying to improve myself. I enjoy putting myself in new situations and seeing what unfolds, so I have a very open mind, but am still very competitive and have no unrealistic expectations. I look forward to coming to Miss Universe and representing my beautiful nation of Denmark.
4.) The venue for the next edition of Miss Universe is yet to be announced. If you are to choose, which city or country would like to host the Miss Universe pageant and why?
I would have to say Malaga, Spain. It is an amazing vacation and tourist spot, with a great resort town, and I think that the pageant has not been held in Western Europe enough! Spain is in a great location to other participating countries and it has the event spaces needed to facilitate a beautiful Miss Universe competition!
5.) Are you in favor of gay marriage? Why or why not?
Denmark was the first country to legalize gay marriage, in 1987, and it is one of the few countries around the world where same-sex marriage can occur in a church, if not the only one. I believe love is universal and if it is legal for some, it should be legal for all.
6.) What is your opinion regarding the influx of Syrian immigrants in Europe?
I think that it is a horrible situation that is occurring in Syria right now, I think it is great that there are countries, such as Denmark, that can provide relief for persecuted refugees. What I believe is that things need to be fair across the board, and every country needs to follow the same rules regarding immigrants. If there are people that can leave a bad situation, and move to a new country, and help society as a whole – that is excellent, Denmark is a very society and community aware country. My best friend had to flee eight different horrible situations, where she was a victim just for being a woman, born in a country where women’s rights do not exist.
7.) Do you think that swimsuits are still relevant in beauty pageants nowadays?
I believe that the physical fitness aspect is still important. I believe that having a goal to work for and be proud of is not objectifying, it is empowering.
8.) Do you think that feminism and political correctness prevented the growth of popularity of pageants in many countries?
I believe that this has been from the lack of understanding as to what a beauty pageant is, and because of that, there has been a major lack of interest. There has been a cultural shift, now that women as a whole have proven the level of success they can achieve, where beauty pageants and similar things are now being seen as more competitive with training, fitness, public speaking, interview, and more and therefore, more popular.
9.) What makes you proud to be a Danish woman?
I am proud to be a Danish woman because Denmark is an amazing country. We have the lowest wage gap in the world between men and women, we have the best maternity leave benefits for mothers, we have the best healthcare in the world, and we still raise our flag proudly with pride, we tolerate and accept everyone’s differences, we are curious people, and we are a small nation. I am proud because I have the opportunities available to me to be whatever I want.
10.) Finally, a message to your fans at Missosology.
I look so much forward to start this amazing journey I’m starting on. To meet a lot of amazing people and unite our cultures so we can create a stronger bond between us all. Thank you for your support and encouragement!
Special thanks to John Hamilton de Voss for facilitating the interview!