Vanja Petrovic, 22, was born in Zenica and currently resides in Sydney, Australia. Beside representing the Diaspora at the 08' Miss Serbia pageant, the Queensland university graduate (in business management and political science) works as a management consultant for the global business consulting giant Accenture. We discussed everything from pillow fights to Tiger Woods, Enjoy!
You got your degrees in business management and political science at a young age, how has education helped you get where you're at being a first generation immigrant in a country which used to be known for its xenophobia?
Coming from an educated and successful family which was unfairly disadvantaged by a civil war, you become their second chance in a way, so I took every opportunity I could to make them proud.
I am not going to do a promotional run for the company I work for, but having the opportunity to work as a Consultant on projects across 49 countries is incredible! People gain experiences at different paces in their lives, my journey just happens to be a little accelerated so my age and background became less relevant, it gave me confidence and leveraging point to move forward.
It doesn’t always go down well when you fight to shine a light on truth and justice that people don’t want to hear. Often you are faced with the dilemma of keeping quite to remain in favour or standing up for what you believe in regardless of the effect it will have on your mark at university, performance review at work or peoples perception of you.
You stop paying attention to racism when you realise it’s such a pitiable by-product of insecurities and complexes, you try to be a good ambassador of your own people and you move on.
Whats the best movie you've seen in the last 2 months?
Inglourious Basterds- the European cast did an incredible job but dropped dead to fast! Hans from the SS made the movie for me what a character.
I’d love to see something new from the Jap Anime creators and game developers, it’s been a while now but I am still not over Konami’s Metal Gear Solid 4.
I know Miss Serbia beauty pageants can sometimes become hotly contested and tempers have been known to flare, do you have any stories to share with us about anything interesting you saw/heard when you competed?
Not only are you in quarantine which means no chocolate, pancakes or boys for a whole month but putting 20 something girls in one room is hardly ever problem free. Throw in a dance choreography and you have a recipe for disaster. Without mentioning names there was physical violence involved on one occasion and it was a little more up beat than a pillow fight. The theme was Amazonian warriors so I was quite relieved things cooled down by the time we got to use our ‘battle’ equipment.
Being an employee of Accenture which recently dropped Tiger Woods I would like to get your take on whether its morally acceptable for someone as nerdy as him to cheat?
I don’t think it’s acceptable for anyone to cheat when in a relationship and under any circumstances. I do know however that we have replaced him with a logo of a Cheetah J
You are a Scorpio, so ill ask you point blank did you sleep with Tiger?
I grew up with Salvadorans so Spanish rubbed off on me over the years and when people from the country that produces MS 13 give you the nick name Tigrese, there is only room for one tiger in my company.
Editors note -- off the record Vanja mentioned a fight which ensued during a dance rehearsal at the Miss Serbia pageant. Apparently the eventual winner viciously slapped the runner up. After much investigation I've identified the culprit as Dragana Atlija and the victim as Milica Nedeljkovic. Scary!