Ariana Velishek Miss River Valley

Ariana Velishek is currently a senior Respiratory Therapy student at St. Catherine University, the college for women. She is expected to graduate in the spring of 2024 and get licensed as a Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT). While in school, Ariana currently works at North Memorial Hospital as a Respiratory Therapy Intern in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. 


While in school, Ariana participates in the Respiratory Therapy Club, where she helps put together events and activities for other students in the program. Being involved in her program is essential for her to give back to students with the same desire to be a Respiratory Therapist. When Ariana is at clinical, she enjoys patient care, the intensive care unit (I.C.U.),  and the emergency department (E.D.). Her goal is to be a future RRT to practice patient care in a critical care setting. While not on-campus, Ariana's involvement includes Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (D.E.I.) involvement with different businesses and organizations, teaching and conversing about D.E.I. It is crucial for Ariana to portray light on D.E.I. when connecting with communities and, learning from other's experiences, and acknowledging that she sees them for them.


Ariana wishes to pursue a career as a Respiratory Therapist after graduation in the spring of May 2024. Ariana is a Peruvian-American woman who values the aspect of the Peruvian and American culture she grew up in. Growing up, Ariana spent a significant amount of time volunteering for a non-profit in Peru, serving residents with life needs and medical assistance. After graduating, she intends to work more closely with the non-profit she volunteers with, which helps people in Peru with medical assistance like cleft lip and open palate surgeries. Beyond those surgeries, she desires to apply her RRT practice in Peru with patient care. Ariana continues to open doors and make opportunities to move forward in patient care and advocacy in the United States and Peru.


While entering her senior year of college in August 2023, Ariana was empowered by other young women who approached her about the mission of the Miss America Organization (M.A.O.). She then officially decided to pursue her journey with the organization and compete for a local title. The time felt suitable for Ariana; she was finishing school and establishing her life as a young woman, and it made sense to take the leap of faith. Having the ability to find her place helped her create Let's S.E.E.: Revision of the conversation about Diversity. S.E.E. stands for Support, Elevate, and Empower, and using that to S.E.E. others in conversations about Diversity. As Miss River Valley, her mission is to S.E.E. individuals from all backgrounds to pursue opportunities with the stepping stone of conversations of Diversity. Believing that everyone should have access to resources regardless of circumstances or differences.


Ariana enjoys being outdoors and surrounds herself with family and friends. She loves to travel in-state, out-of-state, and out of the country. Trying new things and learning about the different places she travels. Creating connections and opportunities for her and others is what Ariana thrives on. Ariana also has a mini dachshund, Gamgi, who she loves to go on walks with and spend time with at the lake!

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