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Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen Encourages Girls to Pursue STEM Careers

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Arrian Patman, Radiographer and newly crowned Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen, is a champion for STEM studies in Jamaica. The 25-year-old, who hails from the small community of Mango Village in Delveland, outshone nine other contestants to claim the coveted title at the Coronation held on Sunday, June 18, at the Sean Lavery Faith Hall, Savanna-La-Mar.

Arrian Patman is all smiles after being crowned Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen 2023 on Sunday, June 18, at the Sean Lavery Faith Hall, Savanna-La- Mar. The Miss Jamaica Festival Queen Competition is one of several activities that are coordinated by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) to commemorate the country’s anniversary of Independence.

Reflecting on her  journey, Patman said the victory was no easy feat as she had to balance her busy work schedule with that of the Competition. She said, “Managing my work life and the training schedule was challenging because I live in Kingston, work in St. Catherine and the training was in Westmoreland. I had to travel between three parishes…the journey from Kingston to Westmoreland and back is tiresome but I was determined. I had a plan and I had to see it through.”

Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen 2023, Arrian Patman (centre), is flanked by first runner-up Deborah Dawes and second runner-up Kelsie Ann Porter. The Miss Jamaica Festival Queen Competition is one of several activities coordinated by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) to commemorate the country’s anniversary of Independence.

When asked why she chose to pursue a career in Radiography, Patman explained that her choice was based on the advice she received from a Radiographer, who participated in the Manning’s School  Career Day. 

Le Chone Redwood, (behind center), 2022 Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen and the second runner-up to the Miss Jamaica Festival Queen, places the crown on the new Miss Westmoreland Festival Queen, Arrian Patman, (center) while first runner-up Deborah Dawes, (left), and second runner-up Kelsie Ann Porter,(right), look on.

“ I knew from before first form that I wanted to pursue something in the medical field and over the years that changed quite a few times- from nursing to dentistry to doctor- but when I was in third  form, I had to take a serious look into my future. We had a Career Day at Mannings and I spoke with a Radiographer. She gave me some pamphlets, a lot of information as to what radiography entails and I went home and  did my homework… I graduated from the University of the West Indies (Mona) with First Class Honours in Diagnostic Imaging-Radiography…”

She continued, “As a Radiographer, I use radiation to view the internal structures of the body. I am verse in doing  mammogram, CT scan and X-Ray… What pulled me to radiography was the fact that I consider it the center of the medical field. Majority of the procedures that are done in the healthcare sector requires a visualization of the internal structures of the body and that is where Radiographers come in.”

Patman is passionate about the promotion of “Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics” (STEM) in schools and breaking down gender barriers in science. 

“I support STEM in schools wholeheartedly. I am truly passionate about the significance of the STEM education, particularly for Jamaican girls. Throughout history, Jamaicans have made remarkable contributions to various fields, including STEM… STEM creates a gateway for endless opportunities for Jamaican girls, it equips them with the skills, knowledge and confidence to extend in fields traditionally dominated by men. By embracing STEM we are encouraging and empowering girls to pursue their dreams and break barriers as well as to contribute to the growth and innovation of our nation.” She said.

Her words of encouragement to women wishing to pursue studies and careers in STEM are, “Whatever your mind can conceive, you can achieve. Dream it, believe it and achieve it. Never doubt yourself. If you want something in life, go for it…The action for getting something done is to conceive positive thoughts and work towards it.” She also shared that her 2023 vision board includes a picture of a past Festival Queen with the caption, Miss Westmoeland Festival Queen 2023.

The radiographer, who is sponsored by Royale Pharmacy, also won two sectional prizes, namely Most Active in Community and Most Culturally Aware.

Deborah Dawes, who is sponsored by Alexdel Limited is a registered nurse, was the first runner-up and won three sectional prizes — Most Popular on Social Media, Most Poised, and Most Congenial. Kelsie Ann Porter, a student at The Mico University College, who is sponsored by Bridgez Jerk and Rest Stop, won the sectional prize for Best Performer and was the second runner-up.

Patman will go on to compete in the Miss Jamaica Festival Queen Competition, which is one of the highlights of the Jamaica 61 celebrations coordinated by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC).

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