Emily Tokic – Miss Universe Australia Finalist Interview
The search to find the next Miss Universe Australia is underway, with National finalists preparing to touch down in Melbourne later this month ahead of the national finals held at the Sofitel on Collins June 28.
We are chatting with Emily Tokic, from NSW who will be competing for the 2018 title of Miss Universe Australia.
So why don’t you tell our readers a little about yourself?
A little about myself… I am 20 years old, and I was born and raised in Canberra. For thirteen years, I was a dancer (specifically ballet), in which my childhood was spent competing, undertaking exams and performing for others on stage. I am currently in my third year of study undertaking a Bachelor of Commerce/Bachelor of Laws, and upon the completion of my degree, I hope to one day specialise in Human Rights Law, to actively protect and promote human rights in Australia.
So you’ve just returned from the Miss Universe Finalists trip to the Amazing Allia Hotels in Bali …. How was the experience?
It was the most unforgettable experience, in which I am so grateful to have been a part of, I had the privilege of spending the week with 31 other beautiful and intelligent women, who I was able to form many life-long friendships with, I was also able to bond with the Miss Universe Australia team, hair and makeup team, and the film crew. We had an extremely busy week, between workshops, interviews, photo shoots, fitness sessions, lunch/dinner events and spending time with the children from the Sari Hati Centre, which ultimately taught us the qualities and attributes required to become an ambassador for Australia. Staying at the beautiful Alila Hotels was an incredible experience in itself, I can confidently say that it is one of the most beautiful, yet accommodating hotel groups that I have ever been fortunate enough to stay with.
We know there was an amazing program of things for you all, what was your highlight?
The highlight of the Miss Universe Australia Finalists trip for me, was when the Children from the Sari Hati Centre visited us at Alila Ubud. We spent the morning engaging in a number of activities such as dancing, soccer and making friendship bracelets. From this, I was fortunate enough to speak to Sari, a truly inspiring and selfless woman who started the school a number of years ago, in which she shared with me some stories as to why she decided to form a school to aid children and young adults with mental and physical disabilities. This was a truly eye-opening and humbling experience for me – to see how easy it is to make a difference in this world.
So now you’re home and having undergone the best prep we can think of you know the sun, surf and Bali …. it’s not long till the national finals in Melb… how are you feeling in the lead-up and what sort of preparation are you doing, before finals week commences?
I am so excited! Before finals week commences, my preparation will consist of the following: firstly, a healthy and nutritious diet, as I believe it is essential to not only be looking at your best, but feeling at your best. Secondly, exercise – on a weekly basis, I will attend many high-intensity training sessions, along with one ballet class per week. Lastly, I love to read; I believe this will be the best form of preparation for our interviews, along with the question and answer section.
With so many of you all bringing an individual flair to the competition, what do you think will set you apart from the other contestants?
Each one of us is so different, in so many ways – we all have our strengths, and we all have our weaknesses. However, the one thing that I believe that will set me apart from the other contestants is my character – I am a very empathetic, yet confident, strong-willed and determined individual, who will always put in 100% into everything that I do, no matter how big or small the given task is.
Speaking of being unique we all have different motivations, what is something that motivates you daily or you would say is your passion?
A piece of advice that my parents have always told me is to never give up on my dreams – to always put in 100% into everything that I do, no matter what the outcome is. In life, every single experience and opportunity that you encounter, you are able to learn from, and I believe this is important in shaping your character, and what you believe in. Along with this, I have learnt to draw strength from each of the many setbacks I have experienced to date, which have shaped the person that I am today.
What is something people might find interesting about yourself?
Something interesting about me is that I started dancing at the age of four, and unfortunately stopped when I was almost 17. I’ve recently returned to dance, and am currently undertaking one ballet class per week. For many years, ballet consumed my life – I lived and breathed it, and wanted to pursue it as a career; I couldn’t see myself doing anything else. However, upon completing year 10, I lost my love for it, and decided to focus on my studies – putting my dancing career aside, which was soon after replaced by my aspirations of a career in law. My childhood was spent competing in eisteddfods, performing for others on stage, and preparing for exams. It was a large part of my life that I am incredibly grateful for, as it not only kept me fit and healthy, but it also taught me many invaluable life skills such as self-discipline, confidence and perseverance.
Where is your favourite place in the world to wind down and relax?
Waikiki, Hawaii. It has the best of everything… beaches, shopping and great food – what more can you want?
The Miss Universe program has a long and proud history and focuses on helping women become the best versions of themselves, how do you think your experience so far will help move you forward in life?
Thus far, I have gained an invaluable amount of knowledge and skills from the Miss Universe Australia program. There have been many humbling and rewarding experiences, such as having the children from the Sari Hati Centre visit us at Alila Ubud, cooking for the families at the Ronald McDonald House in Randwick, and raising much-needed funds for Toybox International, in which all proceeds will be put towards supporting Australia’s sick and disadvantaged children. From this, I have encountered many genuinely inspirational and selfless people, who have not only shown me but inspired me to make a change in this world. It has become clear to me, that all it takes is one kind gesture and one small action, to make a difference.
What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?
I guess it’s not so funny considering it’s quite a significant item in terms of gaining access to a country and returning back home… however upon my arrival in Bali, I noticed that my passport was missing… in which I started to stress out – at this point, I thought I was stranded in Bali (just quietly – not complaining…) but at the same time I was thinking “I’ve been here for 10 minutes, and I’ve lost the most important item required for travelling…” – to have found out half an hour later, that it had fallen out of my bag in this bus, while en route to Alila Ubud (I am still not sure how…). Sorry guys for all the stress – at least we found it!
Name five things you can’t live without?
1. Peanut butter (I have an obsession…). 2. My phone. 3. Sunglasses. 4. A good book. 5. Chocolate.
How would your closest friend describe you?
My closest friend would describe me as someone that is often quite clumsy… but always puts 100% into everything they do. As someone that can pick themselves up no matter what the situation is, or setback encountered, and someone that will always listen – no matter how big or small the problem is.
If you had 5 minutes with the Prime Minister of Australia, what would you speak to him about?
A significant issue that I believe requires further attention in Australia is homelessness. I believe that no one in a society full of abundance, such as Australia, should be without food and shelter. Furthermore, no one in this day in age should be living without these necessities, and as a result, we must implement more support programs for these individuals, along with affordable housing, in order to help them get back on their feet.