My name is Kimberly Scarduzio and I was recently crowned Miss Maine International 2010. In July, I will be competing for the title of Miss International 2010. I also am a K-5 Special Education Inclusion Teacher. I work with students with moderate to severe disabilities, including students with autism. I have had the utmost joy of working with two students with Down syndrome in the schools that I teach at. One of my students is in Kindergarten. He comes into school every day with the biggest smile on his face, and no matter how challenging of a day I've had, he always knows how to uplift my spirits. My other student is in the fifth grade. It has been an amazing experience getting to know her. She is only of the happiest people I know, and always knows how to entertain. What I am most amazed at is her work ethic. No matter how difficult a task may seem, she is always willing to put in the extra effort. As a result of all of the hard work that she has put in, she recently earned honor roll status and was student of the month! After working with these students this year, I feel that I am a new person. I now look at life as a joyous experience and I no longer take things for granted. My students teach me that no matter how tired or frustrated I may get, it is all worth it for them. I feel so lucky to have the title of Miss Maine International 2010, as I can use it to help promote Inclusion in schools and raise money for research and funding. I only hope that I can make an impact on their lives as they did mine.