Teresa Scanlan: Blonde Miss America sheds Bikini, joins Christian School


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Remember Miss America 2011, Teresa Scanlan? The beautiful blonde was strutting down the runway in a scantily clad bikini flaunting her youthful assets not so long ago.

Well, now she is back, and she has donned a new Avatar. Teresa is now officially a student at the devout and conservative Patrick Henry College. The tiny campus is proud of its strict moral code and rich religious underpinnings, so no more bikinis, figure hugging tank tops, and micro dresses for her.

Teresa has enrolled as a Sophomore and plans on focusing her next few years on classes and coursework, and getting a good education.

So what triggered this huge transformation for the Nebraska born and raised cutie?

Apparently, Scanlan was experiencing some pretty strong feelings of being depressed and even suicidal during her year as Miss America. Was it the heavy coursework, the grueling schedule, or did she go through a passionate romance which did not end as well as she had hoped for?

We would never know for sure. But give some kudos to the young blonde. With her tenacity and support from her family, Teresa has bounced right back into the game as she indicated last week through twitter.

This should also warm countless hearts in Conservative America.

Patrick Henry is still a relatively small campus located in the upscale outer suburbs of Washington, D.C. with a student population of 320 and five majors, including journalism, literature and history. And it seems that you need top-tier SAT scores to get admitted into one of their programs. (image)

This leaves no doubt that Scanlan, who came from a homeschooling family is not just beautiful, but brainy as well. After all, she earned a 3.75 GPA during her Freshman year, although her goal was 3.9 GPA or higher - with her sights set at the coveted Harvard Law School.

This means Teresa is doing well not only for herself, but setting a good example for younger Christian conservatives who need a new role model in the public square. And apparently, the school's founder and chancellor, Mike Farris agrees. Despite complaints and grumbles from some who believe that wearing bikinis and revealing plenty of skin as Miss America is contrary to the school's code and values, Farris and Scanlan beg to differ.

"I don't view getting into the pageant world to be incompatible with Christian values...She's very bright, a great communicator," said Farris, who established his reputation and relationship with homeschooling families as a civil rights lawyer.

"I have never violated my conscience. I was never compromising my morals...For myself, I have never believed it's wrong for a female to wear a swimsuit that would show the same amount of skin as a man," added Scanlan, in her defense.

So when the college Chancellor and his famous student both agree, who are we to disagree?

Does this mean that Scanlan's fans can still hope that the intelligent and magnetic blonde will continue to grace magazine covers, take up modeling opportunities, and more? Perhaps, but until then, Teresa Scanlan's fans will have to make do with her enchanting Miss America moments.

[images cropped from Teresa Scanlan's official website]