Kaitlyn Ross crowned Miss Indiana University 2023

BLOOMINGTON, INDIANA – Sunday evening, Feb. 19, Kaitlyn Ross, a  21-year-old from

Fishers, Indiana, won the title of Miss Indiana University. Pageantry at IU student organization produced the competition, which featured eight contestants and awarded over $4,000 in scholarships.

Ross shared her excitement about winning the Miss Indiana University title: “I am beyond grateful that I have the opportunity to serve my campus and community as Miss Indiana University 2023! I have loved my time in Bloomington the last four years and can see no better way to wrap up my senior year than by representing IU at a state-wide level.”

As Miss Indiana University 2023, Ross receives a $1,500  scholarship from the IU Foundation and the opportunity to compete for Miss Indiana in Zionsville, June 12-17. Ross will receive an additional $250 scholarship for scoring the highest in the interview phase of the competition.

From Fishers, Indiana., Ross is a senior majoring in biology. She will begin law school at IU’s Maurer School of Law this fall.

During her year as Miss IU, Ross will advocate for her social impact initiative, which is the Mileva Project, named after Albert Einstein’s wife Mileva Marić. Like other women in her era, she did not receive recognition for her scientific accomplishments. The Mileva Project supports the next generation of young women by providing them with STEM resources and by sharing women scientists’ forgotten stories. She is currently working with organizations such as the Girl Scouts and Girls in STEM to share with young women what it means to be a scientist and to share STEM experiences! She will talk to young women and community organizations, urging them to embrace their STEM experiences and their love for science.

Jenna Zeider, president of Pageantry at IU, commented Ross’s win. “Kaitlyn told me before going on stage that this was the last preliminary she was competing in this season, so it was very bittersweet to hear her name announced as the new Miss IU! She’s so deserving!” Zeider said.

A number of other contestants received awards during the competition, including 1st runner-up ($1,500 in scholarships) Madelyn Dickerson, from Lizton, Indiana, who also scored highest in the talent competition; 2nd runner-up ($1000 scholarship) Alexandra Knotts, from Gibsonia, Pennsylvania.; Community Service ($250 scholarship) Charity Holmes, from Miami, Florida;  and People’s Choice ($100 prize), Alexis Hipsky, from Zionsville, Indiana.

Major sponsors of the Miss IU competition include the IU Foundation, which provided $3,000 in scholarships, and the IU Funding Board, which provided a $ 2,800 grant to underwrite the costs of the event.

The Miss Indiana University Scholarship Competition is a local Miss America competition and serves as a qualifier for the Miss Indiana Scholarship Pageant.

Miss America offers academic and community-based scholarships for undergraduate and graduate studies for the women of the Miss America program, whose mission is to empower women through career resources and scholarships. Participation in the Miss America program provides women with access to a cadre of scholarship opportunities from women in medicine, women in business, women in STEM, social impact initiatives, the arts, and more.

Miss America is one of the nation’s leading achievement programs and the world’s largest provider of scholarship assistance for young women. Each year, the Miss America Opportunity awards more than $5 million in scholarships.


Hannah Oelschlager

Public Relations Chair, Pageantry at IU


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