Get to know Miss Universe runner-up Raquel Pelissier of Haiti

For one, this girl's got brains!

( Although it's already been a day since the Miss Universe pageant, the coronation night is still the talk of the town. One name, in particular, has had everyone talking: Miss Haiti Raquel Pelissier, the first runner-up to the crown.


The 25-year-old bested early frontrunners, including Miss Thailand and Miss Venezuela, and when she landed in the Top 6, she was easily the favorite to win with her eloquent answer. Here's why we think this stunner, a survivor of the massive earthquake in 2010, is going to go very, very far.



Raquel is taking her Master's Degree in Scientific Research in Optometry and Vision.

She's more than just a pretty face! Raquel is an optometrist and is currently working on research on the regeneration of the optic nerve. Her ultimate goal? To find a cure for blindness!


She almost didn't make it to the pageant.

After Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti and left massive destruction in its wake, Raquel's sponsors backed out to "support other causes." She turned to a now-deleted GoFundMe page to ask for help.



Recommended Videos


She speaks four languages.

She speaks fluent English, French, Spanish, and Haitian Creole. We also hear she's a little bit Filipino on her mother's side.


Raquel suffered a 21-day coma when she was four.

When she was four years old, she fell into a coma after contracting meningitis. On Instagram, she wrote about her experience, saying, "Many days I ask myself why did I get another opportunity at life? Why me? I will never find the answers to those questions but I feel so blessed to be alive, to be healthy, to have a family who loves me and to be living my dreams. No matter what happens at the finals, I am and still will be grateful to have the opportunity to come here to the Philippnes and represent my country."




She does CrossFit.

It probably comes as no surprise that beauty queens are pretty fit. In Raquel's case, she works out eight to nine hours a week, and is also into aerial dance.

Tell us your #feels!

Total votes
View more stories tagged

Help us make better!
Take the short survey

Read more stories about

Latest Stories

Load More Stories