MOST students take a part-time job in a bar or supermarket to pay their way through university.
But one glamorous postgraduate is hitting the runways in a bid to settle her student loans and make the big time.
Lana Elaine Fraser, from Dalry, has beaten off competition from 1000 contestants to make her pageant debut in next month’s Miss Galaxy Scotland after being named Miss Edinburgh City Galaxy.
If the 22-year-old then wins the UK Final, she will jet off to Orlando in Florida where she will stay in a luxury hotel andtake part in the world-famous Galaxy International pageant.
Combining beauty and brains, Lana graduated from Glasgow’s Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama with a degree in traditional music and is now studying a masters degree in music therapy at Queen Margaret University.
She said: “At the moment I’m doing a masters degree which is a two-year course. It’s not funded so I’m trying to pay that off as well as make a living to pay for standard living costs.
“I’m hoping that by modelling, performing, composing, teaching and selling my art I’ll get through the course.”
Lana, who plays accordion and piano in an award-winning folk quartet called Gria, was shortlisted after submitting a portfolio from a photoshoot.
When she goes before the judges in the Scottish and then hopefully the UK final on February 6 at the Park Hall Hotel, in Lancashire, one of the rounds will see her sporting only a bikini.
“I have never had to walk on a stage without having an instrument in front of me,” she said.
Lana, who grew up on Shetland, hopes that the pageant will provide a “platform” for her to raise awareness of issues and charities that are important to her.
She also stressed that common perceptions that beauty pageants are for “airheads” and are demeaning to women were unfair.
She said: “The girls I’ve spoken to are well-rounded, hard-working individuals who aren’t just skating by on their looks. Many of them are very successful in their varying lines of work and have done a lot of work for charities too.
“I don’t think it’s fair to cast judgement just because they are competing in a beauty pageant. Just because it is a beauty pageant doesn’t mean they are airheads or bimbos.”
Event director Holly Ikin said pageants had moved a long way in the last 30 years and had become “much more about the personality inside”.
She added: “We are not looking for the next Katie Price. Lana studied at university and she’s naturally pretty. It’s not all about hair and make-up.
“Lana has studied music therapy and she’s in a band. It’s nice to be well-rounded in that respect and that’s what we encourage.”