LAS VEGAS (AP) - The 20-year-old Rhode Islander who brought the Miss Universe crown back to the U.S. for the first time in 15 years is hoping that her quick rise through the beauty pageant ranks and onstage stumble will show women that anything is possible.
Self-described "cellist-nerd" Olivia Culpo is assuming her new role as Miss Universe 2012 following her victory over 88 beauty queens from around the world Wednesday night at the Planet Hollywood casino on the Las Vegas Strip.
She tells The Associated Press that her yearlong transformation from Boston University sophomore to pageant winner proves that women can accomplish anything to which they set their minds.
She says she is glad she tripped slightly during the evening gown competition because it proves that confidence and poise matter more than perfect performance.
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