RCBC alumna promotes body positivity, earns New Jersey Miss Collegiate 2020
Thursday, Mar 26, 2020

Claudia Engelhardt

How does it feel to represent your home state on a national stage? For Claudia Engelhardt, it’s a dream come true. She was crowned Miss New Jersey Collegiate America 2020 and will represent New Jersey at the national pageant held in Little Rock, Arkansas this June. 

Engelhardt, of Mount Laurel, graduated from Rowan College at Burlington County with an associate degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences. She now studies Strategic Communications with a concentration in Social Media Management at Liberty University. She also holds a certification in Health and Wellness coaching from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

As a signed model in Philadelphia and Manhattan, Engelhardt advocates for body positivity and inclusivity. 

“Since I started my career in the industry, I’ve fallen victim to bullying, and I have witnessed many others question their talent and worth based on the opinions of others,” Claudia shared. “As a future Social Media Strategist, I can’t help but acknowledge the good and bad side of social media and the potential negative effects it can have on our younger children if they continue to compare themselves to unrealistic beauty standards. We need to celebrate people for the content of their character rather than just an outward appearance.”

Engelhardt embraces an anti-bullying platform. Although her personal experiences with bullying were difficult, they’ve shaped her views and allow her to help others. She’s partnered with The Body Positive organization and incorporates the pageant’s national platform, B.R.A.V.E (Building Respect and Values for Everyone) into her message.

“I am planning to reach out to schools to talk to kids in the classroom about the harsh reality of bullying and to teach them about B.R.A.V.E. I want to encourage each child to embrace their differences no matter what they are,” Engelhardt said.

As for studying at RCBC, Claudia chose it due to its flexibility, affordability and reputation. 

“I was able to complete about half of my major all online, and as a busy girl, that was so incredibly helpful. I completed all of my Gen Eds at a fraction of the cost and applied them to my current bachelor's degree! Studying at RCBC was a total no-brainer for me,” Engelhardt shared. 

Claudia completed an internship last summer with Faviana, a gown designer in New York City, where she gained valuable experience within the social media realm. She hopes to leverage that experience in seeking a similar role as a social media manager in New York City.