Local Teen Wins Talent Contest, Will Compete For International Crown
By Miriam Rosenberg
“It was a wonderful experience,” said Johnson, who is 15-years old. “I cried with happiness. I was overwhelmed.”
Johnson, who attends the Frederick Douglass Academy VI High School located in Far Rockaway High School, used sign language to translate her speech in the public address portion of the competition.
“I trained with a sign language teacher for three, four months,” said Jasmyne, who studied sign language specifically for the competition. “I was the first ever to use sign language with speech in the competition.
“I studied [sign language] for a few weeks and advanced to a high level.”
Jasmyne, who began learning piano at age six and dancing at age eight, also performed a tap dance routine at the pageant.
She will graduate Frederick Douglass in 2009 and hopes to major in medicine in college.
“I want to help those who can’t do,” she said.
Jasmyne told The Wave that she came away from the state competition with more self-confidence and several lasting friendships.
“I made a lot of friends I’m now in contact with for future activities,” said Jasmyne.
Her duties as the state winner include some travel, radio, television and a possible appearance in Seventeen magazine.
Jasmyne received a $5000 scholarship and several other prizes. Her father – De Shawn Mason (the program director at Madison Boys and Girls Club) – will accompany Jasmyne to spend one week in St. Maarten, Netherlands, Antilles where – on July 30 – she will compete for the international crown.
The Hal Jackson Talented Teens International Competition is sponsored by The Committee For Positive Youth which encourages artistic and academic excellence in young girls between the ages of 13 to 17 years of age.