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First runner up Tusisaleia Pomele is student in Hawaii

APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, Nov. 11, 2009) - A young woman with a goal of a degree in Nursing is the new Miss Samoa.

Miss Samoa USA, Tusisaleia Hope Pomele, 22, has been announced the new Miss Samoa following the abrupt resignation of the previous title holder, Jacinta Bourne.

Rumors are aplenty about why Ms Bourne has resigned.

The Samoa Tourism Authority (STA), however, yesterday issued a press statement citing personal reasons.

"The Samoa Tourism Authority has accepted a resignation letter from the current Miss Samoa, Jacinta Bourne," the statement said.

"Ms Bourne yesterday handed in her resignation letter stating personal reasons.

"STA CEO Matatamali’i Sonja Hunter has accepted Ms Bourne’s decision on behalf of STA and wishes her well in her future endeavors.

"The Miss Samoa crown and duties will now be handed over and carried by First Runner up, Miss USA, Tusisaleia Hope Pomele."

Born in Fagaalu, American Samoa, Ms Pomele is the daughter of Malae Ava Tuivaiave Pomele, of Aunu’u and Falefa, and Tom-Tausinio Vaimanino Pomele, of Taú, Manua.

She is currently a student at Kapiolani Community College, Hawaii, completing her prerequisites for the Nursing Program at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

She is the current title holder of Miss La Lelei O Samoa.

Ms Pomele is the fourth of ten children and the first in her family to pursue a degree in higher education.

She also works as an EMT certified Combat Medic in the Army Reserve and a Polynesian dancer for Tihati Productions.

Ms Pomele is a firm believer in giving back to the community and has done so through various acts of service, including tutoring high school students, speaking at education conferences, fundraising for scholarships and educating Samoan parents and students about the college experience and its many benefits.

Despite a demanding schedule, Ms Pomele still managed to make the Dean’s List with a 3.9 cumulative GPA, was inducted as a member of the Honor Society and was the interim Corresponding Secretary for the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society at her school.

Ms Pomele will represent Samoa at this year’s Miss South Pacific Pageant, to be held in Fiji, next week.

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