Speaking on ABC's "Good Morning America" Monday, Mallory Hagan says she went to school and worked full time before winning Miss New York and clenching the Miss America crown.
The 23-year-old says she understands "what it's like to do all these things day-to-day and still maintain a healthy lifestyle."
Hagan was crowned Saturday night. She raised the issue of child sexual abuse in her contestant platform.
She tells GMA she looks forward to educating and advocating on the issue during her year reign.
Hagan moved from Alabama to New York City as soon as she became a legal adult. She lives in Brooklyn, the city's most-populous borough.
More Nation & World Headlines
Cop indicted for murder in traffic-stop shooting Will ‘Happy Birthday’ song be free to use soon? Debris linked to missing Malaysian 777 Export-Import Bank excluded from highway bill 777 departs Aleutians after emergency landing House approves highway funding bill Taliban leader Mullah Omar dead, Afghans say Administration wants to give prisoners access to Pell grants
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.