After leaving Ada, the Davuluris moved to Michigan and then to New York. Davuluri graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in brain behavior and cognitive science.
A resident of Fayetteville, N.Y., the 24-year-old Davuluri won the Miss New York title before going on to claim the Miss America crown. She is the first contestant of Indian heritage to capture the Miss America title.
Her pageant platform was “celebrating diversity through cultural competency,” and she showcased her talent on Sunday with a Bollywood fusion dance.
“I’m so happy this organization has embraced diversity,” she said in her first press conference after winning the crown after winning the crown, according to the Associated Press. “I’m thankful there are children watching at home who can finally relate to a new Miss America.”
She wants to be a doctor and is applying to medical school with the help of a $50,000 scholarship she won along with the title, according to the AP.
Davuluri is the second consecutive Miss New York to win the Miss America crown. She succeeds Mallory Hagan, who was chosen in January when the pageant was still held in Las Vegas.
The Miss America Organization will compensate Hagan for her shorter-than-usual reign.