Mattapoisett resident, Jillian Zucco will arrive in Illinois today to compete in a national scholarship pageant. 

Jillian Zucco, the current Miss Middleboro will compete this week in the National Sweetheart Pageant

After becoming the first runner-up to Miss Massachusetts back in June, Jillian was invited to compete in the National Sweetheart pageant, along with 43 other runner-ups from across the country. Many of the girls competing will go onto Miss America in the coming years.

Taking place in America's heartland, Hoopeston, Illinois hosts a week-long corn festival which ends with the weekend-long pageant. Each girl will vie for the title of National Sweetheart and compete for scholarship money to put towards their education. Each girl stays with a host family and participates in the week's festivities.

Friday night starts the competition, with Jillian competing in the lifestyle & fitness and evening wear phases. On Saturday, Jillian will compete in the talent portion. In addition, she will also participate in a 10-minute long private interview with the judges where she'll be asked about her platform, current events and social issues, among many other things.

For her talent, Jillian will be singing Shirley Bassey's version of "That's Life" and her platform is "Choose a Cause, Make a Difference", which aims to spread the spirit of volunteerism.

Best of luck to you, Jillian!

Check out Jillian's video introduction of herself

Here is Jillian's introduction video for the Miss National Sweetheart Pageant!!!

Posted by Miss Middleboro 2015 Jillian Zucco on Wednesday, August 12, 2015