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University of Essex News

University of Essex News


31 May 2017: Brains, beauty, and heart


Codie Yau as first runner up Miss Cambridgeshire 2017Codie at the Miss Cambridgeshire competition

Essex Business School’s Codie Yau, a second year BSc International Business and Entrepreneurship student at our Southend Campus, has been crowned Miss Charity for raising the most money for good causes at the 2017 Miss Cambridgeshire contest.

Codie also won the title of first runner up in the overall competition and is now in the running for Miss England. The semi-finals will take place on 4 June at Kelham Hall and Country Park Newark in Nottinghamshire, with Codie sponsored by ‘Salon Fusion’.

Personal growth

Codie wasn’t expecting to take home a prize when she entered the competition. She said: “Coming first runner up was the biggest shock I’ve ever had!”

After researching the competitions, she was happy to find that they focus on humanitarian work. Entrants identify a cause and do their best to raise awareness and, where possible, funds. Codie chose to focus on ‘Beauty with a Purpose‘ which helps disadvantaged children around the world.

Codie also credits the competition for personal growth saying:

“The whole experience of Miss Cambridgeshire has given me a lot more confidence! I’ve really improved my public speaking and presenting skills. I had to walk down a catwalk in front of an audience, and being competitive is something I didn’t know I actually enjoyed!”

Codie also has some gold nuggets for her fellow students. She said:

“I strongly recommend that everyone tries something different, you might end up really enjoying it.”

A desire to help

Codie Yau with scissorsCodie preparing to fund raise again

Codie took a break from university after her first year due to health issues. This experience made her come out of her shell:

“I realise how lucky I am with all of the support I received from family and friends. I just wanted to give something back.”

She started looking for volunteering opportunities and found Street Spirit Southend, a homelessness charity where she now volunteers as many Saturdays as she can.

Future plans

Codie’s charity work doesn’t stop there. She’s planning to cut her hair off to donate to the ‘Little Princess Trust’ who make wigs for children with cancer in the UK. Asked about future plans about other beauty competitions, she said:

“I might compete again after I finish my degree, university comes first right now.”

All we can say to that is, good luck with everything, Codie!