Layilah Nasser is a 21 year old, rising senior at Spelman College, pursing an undergraduate degree in Psychology. Upon graduating from Spelman, Layilah plans on participating in the dual degree program focused in Quantitative Methods in Social Sciences and International Affairs at Columbia University. She also plans to earn a Ph.D. in Forensic Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Science. Layilah’s career ambition is to work for the US Department of Justice conducting research that improves the juvenile justice system.
Layilah has been actively involved in Girl Scouts since the 1st grade. Growing up, Layilah struggled with bullying for several years before she was able to step out of her comfort zone and take lead. After winning the first troop presidential election, she served as president for many years. The skills she gained from this experience guided her to other leadership opportunities within Girl Scouts. Layilah served as the spokesperson for Girl Scouts of the Nation’s Capital for a year and was a Public Relations Department intern her senior year of high school. She was able spread the word by speaking at different events, participating in documentaries, and interviews. Layilah was granted the opportunity to serve as a co-emcee at the 100th year anniversary on the National Mall in Washington D.C with 250,000 people from all around the world in attendance. Layilah raised awareness regarding the historical and future mission of the Girl Scouts. Over the years, she has received over 20 community service awards as well gaining over 3,000 hours of community with Girl Scouts and her community. As someone who truly believes in the investment young women, Layilah has served as a local and internationally Girl Scout leader. As a local leader, she served in two unprivileged communities in the greater Washington D.C area with 60 girls. Layilah shared that her most rewarding experience was serving as an International troop Leader in Denmark. Her troop included girls from Denmark, Finland, Dubai, and London but they all shared one thing, the passion for serving others. She realized that the main job of a troop leader is not only to plan events, meetings and service activities, but it’s to offer a guiding hand in the development of young women striving to be our future leaders.
During her reign as Miss Southern States, Layilah was living and studying in Copenhagen, Denmark. Under the aegis of a Danish Social Organization, she conducted research on socially marginalized individuals. The clients ranged from young people with mental illnesses to elderly people who needed a social outlet. Her research utilized methods of Positive Psychology applied in a Danish context: it was constructed based on what positive psychologists call an “Appreciative Lens.” Instead of focusing on the flaws of the organization capitalized on their strengths and created an appreciative intervention. She developed a preface entitled: Danish Expansive Community. Nonetheless, the purpose of her interventions were to create cultural exchanges through structured dialogues, optional events and service activities. During her free time, she traveled to 12 different countries including London, Iceland, France and Belgium.
As USA National Miss, not only will Layilah will continue to promote the Girl Scout Mission of helping young women gain the courage, confidence and character to make a difference but she’s excited to raise awareness for the national platform: Crown C. A. R. E S. As a victim of bullying, Layilah used her position as Girl Scout Teen spokesperson to share how the sisters she gained through Girl Scouts saved her life as she struggled with depression for many years. Layilah believes the Crown CARES mission is a great way to educate our youth on bullying prevention.