Joyce Giraud may appear to be just another Hollywood beauty queen, but don’t let the cover of this book fool you.
There are many words that you could use to describe the two-time Miss Puerto Rico, Joyce Giraud. The former Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star is enthusiastic, articulate, sweet and gorgeous, but most of all: busy. After all, Joyce has many roles to play; she’s a mother, a wife, a philanthropist, an actress and producer. Joyce is currently working on two projects; producing a show premiering this fall on a Latin channel and developing a scripted show that she plans to star in sometime in the future. Luckily, Joyce was happy to answer some questions and give some inspiring words.
What many people don’t know about Joyce is that she was an early high school and college graduate. By 19, Joyce had earned two degrees from the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico, one in Social Work and the other in Special Education.
“My mother always encouraged my brother and I to pursue education. She told me I could be a model or do pageants or whatever I wanted, but to study first,” said Joyce, and she did just that. With her education as a back up plan, like her mother suggested, Joyce found herself in the entertainment industry.
While she loves the entertainment industry, she admits it hasn’t always been easy. “Just last year, I had a girl I was on a show with say that I belonged in Miami with all the Latinas instead of LA,” she explains. Joyce was left in great disbelief, as she couldn’t believe she was dealing with racism in this day and age. However, being the optimist that she is, Joyce never lets much, if anything, put her down.
“I stay determined, I don’t let anything hold me back. If anything, I feed off [the negative] to do better things,” confidently adding, “If anyone ever has misconceptions, I often find myself proving them wrong.”
Joyce may have not pursued a career in the field she studied, but that doesn’t stop this Latina from believing in the importance of education, a subject she is passionate about. Education also served as one of the reasons why she started her own pageant, Queen of The Universe.
“[The Pageant] was started to give girls a platform to do amazing things,” she says proudly.
Joyce was inspired to partner with the United Nations Education Science and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, a charity that builds schools in Africa, after her mother-in-law helped open 500 schools. Having children of her own, Joyce strongly feels that, “No child should be denied the proper tools to succeed.”
It’s a breath of fresh air to speak to someone who has so much pride in being a Latina. Whether she’s on television or over the phone, Joyce speaks proudly about her background, but always remains humble.
Joyce credits “100%” of her success to her Puerto Rican upbringing by her mother, adding “I’m very proud of my background. I’m grateful to my mom because she made me the woman I am. She prepared me for life. [My upbringing] has shaped my values, my morals and outlook on life.”
There’s no denying that Joyce has become a role model for many Latinas; she’s successful, smart and ambitious.
When asked what she aspires for young Latinas, she says, “I want to encourage Latinitas to not give up on their dreams, they must persevere to achieve their goals. Education is the absolute key to a better future and a better generation. Looks fade, but one thing that remains is your brain and what you study.”