Student Spotlight: Maliyah Lorenzo, Worlds Top Model 2021


 As the second oldest of six, Laurel Springs junior, Maliyah Lorenzo, knows what it’s like to be at the top. Not only is she a role model for her siblings, but she’s a runway model who has dedicated her time to family, fashion, and philanthropy. On December 5th, she received another top honor: Worlds Top Model 2021. Here she shares her story of how she got to where she is now and what she hopes to accomplish in the future. 

The Role of a Model

Before Maliyah hit the runway at age 15, she hit the volunteer booth at age four. “Being the second oldest, I have developed a lot of patience and responsibilities with having a big family.” These responsibilities stretch beyond her family life as she feels inspired to serve the community. “I am an ambassador for many non profits and I host beach clean-ups along the Gulf Coast of Florida.”

As for her responsibility to follow her passions, Maliyah’s introduction into fashion started long before her first show. “The modeling and fashion world has been in our family for 4 generations. I'm honored to continue our legacy! My mom and I love mixing our family fashion traditions with modern designs to create one of a kind pieces...I'm now incorporating my style into my next creations for my competitions and runway.”

Some of these appearances include shows from Ohio State University to the prestigious runways of New York Fashion Week. “The designers all had such a very cool, unique, personal look. I was honored to be wearing a piece of their collection while having the opportunity to make their creations come to life on the runway!”

Life on the Runway

One of Maliyah’s most recent appearances turned out to be one of her most exciting. “The Beauty It’s Everywhere Fashion Show and Top Model Competition was on December 4th and 5th in Orlando, Florida...They are exactly what it means, beauty is truly everywhere, all shapes, sizes, ages and diversities. That's what drew me to this competition. I am so honored to be a part of something so rare but so needed today!”

Maliyah competed in both her age division and the overall Worlds Top Model Competition. “With a lot of girls from all ages and all other countries, surprisingly I didn't really feel ‘competitive,’ I felt passionate and confident! I was truly there for the love and passion for modeling, runway and the creativity it brings to me...I had the opportunity to showcase my designs and my mom's designs while ‘competing’ in a model competition full of diversity from around the world...So my pride in what I was wearing, where I was, and the meaning behind all of it, truly allowed me to shine from the inside out!”

And shine she did. “I truly came into the fashion show for the experience, and to just have fun… little did I know I would be going home with a crown! I was a bit stunned when I made top 16, THEN top 6 AND from there they called bronze and silver... When they called my name for gold I was confused at first because I wasn’t sure if gold meant the winner or the runner up, so my reaction was priceless! I competed against over 100 beautiful ladies from the ages of 4 to 66, and I won the overall international title: World’s Top Model 2021!!!”

In the midst of all the pageantry there was still a pandemic, but organizers of the event made sure everyone could safely participate. “I'm also proud to say that the organization did an amazing job with keeping everyone socially distanced, and making sure that everyone felt safe! The venue was large enough to stay apart and they had hand sanitizer stations set up every 6 feet. Masks were also mandatory at all times, so it really helped in making me feel safe and healthy.”

Getting to Gold

While Maliyah has taken many roads that led to this Worlds stage, she and her mom credit Laurel Springs for helping them along their educational journey. It was Maliyah’s mom, Laylah Loiczly, who brought us this story and wanted to thank LSS for the part we played. “If it wasn't for your online academy, amazing staff and teachers, we wouldn't have been able to take this opportunity! The unlimited flexibility within your academic schedule is crucial for these young ladies like Maliyah to receive top notch education while pursuing their dreams! I cannot thank you enough, your staff and your teachers for their support, encouragement and resources!”

Of course, Maliyah agrees with the sentiment. “Our time dedicated to create these designs and to follow our dreams could NOT have happened without [LSS]! This Academy has given me the flexibility, and opportunity to travel and have the right amount of time for my modeling career and pageant world. My teachers and counselor have open communication and they're easily accessible no matter where I'm at. They're always making sure that I'm understanding everything...and they are there every step of the way. They walk me through any questions that I have and I can truly feel their love for teaching. I am way more comfortable in learning and I don't feel the pressure I would have elsewhere.”

Now, with a world title under her belt, Maliyah has her sights set higher. “I feel that this private online school really helps prepare me for college...I plan to attend Florida Gulf Coast University with a major in Psychology. Coming from a big family with lots of siblings, I have seen and been through it all. I can relate to a lot of children and adults from all around the world. I feel that I will be able to help others just as others have helped me.”

“In the near future, you can find me on the runway bringing fashions to life, in front of the camera modeling and having fun embracing my youth...Fashion and modeling will always be a part of my life and I can't wait to see what the future has in store for me.”