"God answers prayers in three ways: Yes, Not Yet, or There's something better in store." - Unknown
Many people have a guiding principle or mantra that help them make the hard choices in life, for Cassandra Searles this is it. Born in Fort Rucker Alabama to a small military family she did not have the easiest upbringing. She was raised with her two siblings by her single mother. From this, Cassandra learned at a young age to cherish what you have, make the most of what is given to you, and to strive and work hard for what you want.
At the age of sixteen she moved to Washington where she fell in love with the evergreen trees and fresh air. After graduating from high school she started a career with Sterling Bank where she has been working for the past six years. Wanting more than just a job she enrolled at Bellevue College for her Associate's degree and then transferred to the University of Washington-Bothell. She graduated in 2012 earning her Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration with a dual concentration of Management and Marketing. While working and studying full time she was also able to accomplish the astonishing feat of purchasing a house at the age of only twenty without the help of her family.
It is Cassandra's amazing drive and work ethic that allows her to focus and achieve her goals. This is what she wants to instill in others. In these hard financial times it is more important than ever for young people to understand the job market and money management. Cassandra is working with Junior Achievement where she hopes that her work and real life experience will help young people succeed and thrive in a global economy. Cassandra's other philanthropic efforts include Habitat for Humanity, Race for the Cure, Walk MS, and The Big Climb for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Cassandra's perseverance and determination have impacted more than just her financial life. It has also influenced her connection with the Miss USA pageant. Having competed in the pageant for the fourth year in a row, it is her dedication and focus that have helped her win the title of Miss Washington USA. She has demonstrated her ability to grow and prosper with the guidance of her mentors, friends and family. Her drive inspires other girls to not give up on their dreams and that with hard work, grace, and a killer pair of heels anything is possible.
Cassandra's dreams do not stop with winning Miss Washington USA. The title will help her to continue and expand her efforts in educating young people with their financial future. She hopes holding the title will also aid her in her ultimate goal of working for the F.B.I. to prevent white collar crimes, specifically targeting the funding of terrorist organizations.
Through her life, all of Cassandra's prayers have been answered: some with yes, many with a no, and a few with not yet. Overall, she is blessed and thankful for what she has: a loving family, a wonderful career, a bright future, two little Pomeranians, and hopefully soon the Miss USA crown. Fingers crossed that her last prayer is answered with a yes, but she knows a not yet can be pretty good too.