How Patch Magtanong conquered the pageant stage and became a lawyer at the same time

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 13) — Just days after sashaying on the pageant stage, newly-crowned Binibining Pilipinas International Bea Patricia "Patch" Magtanong continues to "slay"—proving she is more than meets the eye.

The 25-year-old stunner was among the 1,800 new lawyers who took their oath at the Philippine International Convention Center Thursday.

READ: New lawyers take oath, urged to use technology for legal field's improvement

In a field where women are often criticized for their intellect--or the seeming lack thereof--Magtanong is out to prove that she is a queen with beauty, brains and substance.

The Bataan native earned her law degree from the University of the Philippines Diliman, where she also finished her pre-law study in Business Economics.

It was in college when she was introduced to the glitz and glamour of the fashion industry, doing modeling jobs as part of the Philippine Model Association on the side.

Pageant fans had been waiting for Magtanong to join a national pageant as early as 2015, but it took her years to do so, as she chose to prioritize her dream of pursuing a legal profession first.

"I was actually a model during my undergrad, and I was introduced to the world of pageantry, so I was meant to join around 2015 when I graduated from college. But I passed law school so I chose to put off pageantry for four years and finished my studies first. And then before I entered law school, actually I counted my age kung kaya ko pa sumali (if I could still join). And then I was 25 when I finished the bar, so sabi ko kaya pa, pwede pa (I told myself that I still can). I wanted to pursue both and that's what I did," she told CNN Philippines in an interview after she was crowned early Monday.

And the wait was worth it. Aside from the crown, Magtanong—one of the most cheered among the 40 candidates during the Binibining Pilipinas 2019 coronation night—bagged the Best in Swimsuit and Binibining Megawide plums.

The Philippines' chance of bagging its seventh Miss International victory now lies in her hands. Magtanong has a tough job ahead of her, following the brides-maid finish of Maria Ahtisa Manalo in last year's installment of the annual international beauty derby.

Magtanong also won the hearts of many eagle-eyed beauty pageant fans who likens her win to that of Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa. Many insinuate that they were both robbed of the chance to represent the Philippines in Miss Universe, given their impressive performances especially during the "question and answer" portion.

READ: 'Déjà vu': Gazini Ganados-Patch Magtanong win likened to Maxine Medina-Kylie Verzosa scenario in 2016

With her dreams turning into reality, Magtanong now wants to use her influence to promote her advocacy in helping inmates fight for their rights.

"My advocacy is for the rights of prisoners and persons deprived of liberty because in law school I was part of an organization where we visited jails and provided help for them. I'm also part of an NGO (non-government organization) right now and we what we do is we teach the inmates in different city and municipality jails the legal process so at least they know their rights," she said.