Opportunity knocks for JC native

Hope Driskill (back row, far left) will be a member of the Gota tribe when the new season of Survivor begins Wednesday. (CBS publicity photo)

Hope Driskill (back row, far left) will be a member of the Gota tribe when the new season of Survivor begins Wednesday. (CBS publicity photo)

Hope Driskill may be in Milan, Italy, for a modeling job, but nothing will stop the Jefferson City native from watching the twohour season premiere of “Survivor: Caramoan—Fans vs. Favorites” at 7 p.m. Wednesday on CBS.

“I’m probably going to have to stay up all night because it’ll be about 3 in the morning here,” Driskill said.

Driskill is one of 20 castaways on the 26th season of “Survivor,” which features first-timers competing against returning players. Driskill is a first-timer.

The season was filmed on one of the Caramoan Islands in the Philippines, known as a “secret paradise.”

Driskill, 23, was crowned Miss Missouri in 2010 and competed in the Miss USA Pageant in Las Vegas in 2011. “I’ve just had the most wonderful opportunities,” Driskill said. “I’ve gotten to travel and see the world and meet new people. I’ve gotten to do some of the coolest things. “Survivor definitely tops the list.” Although Driskill couldn’t talk about her experience on the reality television show, she said she did go into the competition with a strategy, one that stems from her undergraduate degree in political science and pre-law from the University of Missouri.

“It kind of helped me in a sense because my entire college career was classes on strategy and thinking and critical thinking,” Driskill said. “The game of ‘Survivor’ has so much to do with that. It’s kind of a social game. It’s how you deal with others.”

The “Survivor” season was filmed last summer, after Driskill graduated from college in May.

She said in the fall, she traveled to New York and modeled for a short time before she signed with a modeling agency in Milan, which is where she is now.

“I’ve had numerous different jobs and photo shoots,” Driskill said of Milan. “I’ve gotten to work with some incredible people here. Fashion Week will be at the end of February, and then I will be heading back to the states.”

Then, she said her next task is figuring out where she wants to attend law school in the fall.

When asked where she sees herself after law school, Driskill didn’t have a definitive answer. She said she never thought she’d be where she is today.

“If anyone had asked me two years ago what I’d be doing after graduation, I would’ve had no idea,” she said. “I guarantee I would have never thought I would be traveling to Italy or filming ‘Survivor.’”

“When opportunities come, it’s my personality to just take them.”

“Survivor: Caramoan—Fans vs. Favorites” premiers at 7 p.m. Wednesday on CBS (locally on KRCG).

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