More Than Meets The Eye
May 31, 2013
We all remember her as the confident girl from Baalbeck who the public fell in love with, Miss Lebanon 2004… but there is much more to Nadine Njeim than meets the eye. The former beauty queen, who achieved so much during her year-long reign as Miss Lebanon, has not faded from the public eye. Today, she is a student at Sagesse University and is pursuing a career in acting. She is a girl with a dream; a girl who is determined to get what she wants and will not allow anything to get in her way. Today’s Outlook sat down with Nadine to reminisce over her days as Miss Lebanon, and to find out more about her current projects and her plans for the future.
Nadine still recalls with wide-eyed enthusiasm and excitement the night four years ago when her dream became a reality and the feeling she had the moment she was crowned Miss Lebanon, “I felt very happy” said Nadine, “I felt like my dream had come true. Many people have dreams but only few get to achieve what they dream of. For me, that night, my dream had come true and I was very happy because it was one of my goals in life.” For Nadine it took a few days for reality to kick in, “I couldn’t believe that I was bestowed the title of Miss Lebanon and I was to be a public figure; people knew me and I had a lot of responsibilities. I had to go and represent my country. It was a shock.” Nadine admits that although her involvement in Miss Lebanon was a positive one, as is always the case, with the good comes the bad and for her it was the lack of privacy. “Privacy as you knew it is gone, a thing of the past. Initially, adjusting to this new public life was very hard, but when you keep things in perspective, and by that I am referring to all the opportunities that Miss Lebanon showed me, you realize that it is not that big a price to pay. Knowing that you are loved, that’s what is important. You no longer care about privacy or personal life for that year, so I can tell you, without doubt, that Miss Lebanon was a positive thing in my life.”
Carrying the title of Miss Lebanon was also a very educational experience for Nadine. “You know I was 19 years old when I became Miss Lebanon and I really learned a lot from it. I became more mature. I had a lot of uplifting experiences. I did a lot of PR and I had many job opportunities so it was… it was amazing! That’s the word.” As Miss Lebanon, Nadine was also given the opportunity to represent her country in both the Miss World and Miss Universe pageants. “It was great. Miss Universe was a lot of fun, I liked it more than Miss World. It was a very good experience; the girls were all confident and friendly and I’m still in contact with some of them.”
As Miss Lebanon, Nadine selected both the environment and the elderly as her causes to work on throughout the year, although she did a lot of work for various organizations benefiting a number of other causes. “I was approached by other organizations that needed my help” explained Nadine, “organizations that work with children or drug addicts, so I worked in many fields.” She also had a word of advice for the current Miss Lebanon, Rosalitta Tawil, and those who will follow in her footsteps in the years to come. “Unfortunately, what I see sometimes at events or functions, and I’m not talking specifically about Rosalitta, just in general, is that the girl forgets that it’s the public who voted for her and loves her. The fame gets to her head and she becomes very arrogant and forgets what she is there for, so my advice is that she should stay down to earth and be simple and stay close to the hearts of the public because this matters a lot for the future. The public will not forget her or her actions and this will not help her if she does not behave appropriately.” Nadine also stresses that Miss Lebanon should take care of herself and be very selective as to where she goes and what she does because with the title comes responsibilities and many rumors may surface.
Today, Nadine is finishing her Senior year in Business Administration at Sagesse University. For her the transition from being a beauty queen representing her country to going back to university as an average student was something quite normal. “I had to finish my schooling, it was normal for me because I am simple, I’m not complicated. I have many friends at school who really love me because they feel that I’m just one of their classmates. I just go to my classes and study well, and although I don’t have too much time to sit in the cafeteria and socialize, they all know that I’m very approachable and not arrogant. So for me, going back to school was not a problem, it was completely normal.”
As well as juggling her studies, Nadine has kick-started her career in acting starring alongside actor Ammar Chalak. The series, titled Khotwit Hob, tells the story of a woman named Dalia who was in a tragic accident and was left paralyzed. Dalia works in a publishing company editing books and there she meets a famous writer who falls in love with her. Initially, Dalia pushes him away and hides her love for him because she is paralyzed, but the writer loves her for her beauty, her strong character, and her great personality. Dalia finally gives in to her emotions and a relationship ensues. The couple encounters many problems with the writer’s family who rejects the idea of marriage because of Dalia’s paralysis. “It’s a romantic drama” explains Nadine, “It’s a really beautiful story.” The series, composed of nine episodes, will air on LBC in 2009. Nadine also has plans to start filming another series next year.
As for her post-university plans, Nadine aspires to start her own business. “I’m not sure what yet, it might be in fashion, but I definitely want to start a business on my own.” When asked where she sees herself in ten years, Nadine confidently replied “Oh, of course a businesswoman! And still acting, I don’t know! If I excel in acting, maybe I could go international, but because I know my capabilities in business, I know that I will definitely be a businesswoman, and I hope an international actress, that would be a real dream come true.”
Whatever she does, Nadine Njeim is a girl who is guaranteed success. Her classic good looks, witty personality, intellect and unwavering dedication are sure to propel her to unimaginable heights and result in the realization of her hopes and dreams. Today’s Outlook wishes her the best of luck in all her endeavors.