Shayla is a senior at Lowndes High School and plans to attend her hometown college, Valdosta State University, for a four- year degree in Communication Sciences & Disorders. After receiving her Bachelor’s degree, Shayla plans to go to Auburn University to pursue her dream in becoming an Audiologist and helping others who are hearing impaired, like her.
Diagnosed with hearing loss when she was 3 years old, the news was life changing, and she and her family have faced many obstacles, yet Shayla has never let her hearing impairment dictate what she is capable of achieving.
Star Volleyball player, who has received numerous awards including MVP and 1st pick all regional, Honor Roll Student and Best Big sister ever are three roles Shayla proudly plays in her hometown of Valdosta, Georgia.
Was it easy? Not always. Shayla experienced exclusion at a very young age and was harassed by her peers for wearing hearing aids and for talking differently.
Flash forward to 2017, when Shayla created her social media movement, #spreadthelove. This campaign promotes kindness, acceptance and inclusion. It is important that Shayla champion for this cause and share her life experiences with others so they will never feel the loneliness she felt growing up.
Now, almost three years later, Shayla has spoken to hundreds of children about the importance of social acceptance and living life with a caring heart. Her hope is that her book “When I Wear My Crown” will help anyone who reads it #spreadthelove.
Aside from her social impact initiatives, Shayla enjoys being a teenager and many different hobbies! Often you will find her cruising her jeep listening to her favorite tunes, hunting, and collecting ball caps and stickers!
Shayla has hit the ground running as Miss Georgia Teen USA and looks forward to her year of service for the Miss Universe Organization.