Woman with Down syndrome competes in Miss USA state pageant

For the first time, a young woman with Down syndrome competed in a Miss USA state pageant. 

Mikayla Holmgren was born with Down syndrome, but that has never stopped her from living life to the fullest. The Bethel University student is a dancer and serves as a mentor for other young women like her. 

Last weekend, Holmgreen went up against other beauty contestants vying for the title of "Miss Minnesota." 

To help guide her, pageant organizers brought in another trailblazer, Halima Aden. One year ago, Aden became the first Somali-American woman to compete in a pageant wearing a hijab.

Aden didn't win, but she said coming in as a semi-finalist opened up doors for her and others. Since competing in the Miss Minnesota pageant, Aden has signed a lucrative modeling deal and has graced the covers of Vogue as well as Allure. 

Holmgren took home the "Spirit Award" last weekend. 

More details from our sister station, FOX 9! 

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