Australia’s Miss Universe 2018 crowned
UP AGAINST 31 other beautiful women, Chinese-Australian model Francesca Hung has taken the crown at the 2018 Miss Universe Australia competition.
The 24-year-old, a sociology graduate from the University of Sydney, won the title at Thursday night's ceremony at the Sofitel Hotel in Melbourne.
Ms Hung, whose father is Chinese and mother is Irish/Australian, recently completed an undergraduate degree in arts and sociology and is now studying a masters in publishing at the University of Sydney.
Speaking to news.com.au, Ms Hung said she didn't think she was the "typical girl" for the role.
"I used to see former Miss Universes like Jesinta Franklin, Rachael Finch and Jennifer Hawkins and see them as the typical Australian girl," Ms Hung explained. "I never thought that could be me.
"I grew up in an Anglo-Saxon area, and I felt like the odd one out because of my heritage. I was embarrassed and struggled to accept it.
"I hope this is an opportunity to show people if you look or feel different, you are a true representation of the Australian culture. What set me apart was my cultural background, and a bit different for [the] Miss Universe competition."
The stunning brunette said while she now works as a full-time model, her path in to the industry has not been easy.
Now modelling for campaigns for Westfield and Slate Swimwear, Ms Hung said she was turned away from every Sydney-based agency when she first tried to get into modelling.
"I always wanted to get in to modelling and media, but I really struggled to break in to an agency," she said. No one wanted to take me, so I decided to create my own content on social media.
"Eventually someone [Scoop Management] snatched me up."
When asked about the reasoning behind the rejection, Ms Hung said the agencies were very "diplomatic with how they reject".
"They say you're just too short or not quite right," she said.
Ms Hung hopes the crown will launch her career in to media, where she hopes to raise further awareness around mental health issues in young people.
"This can be such an amazing platform for women," she said.
"All the girls in the competition have so many amazing qualities. Some are engineers, lawyers and even marine biologists which are roles people typically think are male [orientated]. "Beauty and brains can go together, and women can do whatever they want."
Miss Hung will now represent Australia at the Miss Universe competition later this year.