America's Next Top Model "Just a Stepping Stone" for Jaslene Gonzalez
Even though she failed to make it to the finals of America’s Next Top Model 7, Jaslene Gonzalez made a huge comeback in the eighth season. She not only became a finalist, but was also deemed the eighth winner of the reality series.

Despite the personal struggles that she faced during the competition, Gonzalez persevered and is now enjoying the fruits of her labor.

“I am living my dream at this moment and my life is definitely a whirlwind,” Gonzalez told The Sports Interview online magazine Thursday. “Working so hard and enjoying this beautiful ride I have now.”

Gonzalez also said that winning America’s Next Top Model does not signal the end for her. On the contrary, she believes her triumph on the show is “just a stepping stone” and “a starting point” for her career.

The 21-year-old model, who is the first Latina to emerge victorious from America's Next Top Model, had good things to say about host and retired supermodel Tyra Banks.

“Tyra Banks is an amazing person,” she said. “I love her. I adore her. I appreciate everything that she has done for me. She won’t forget about me and she would always call to check on how I am doing and things like that. She’s definitely trying to help me follow the right direction.”

She also mentioned that when she was growing up, she looked up to Hispanic actresses like Salma Hayek and Jennifer Lopez, but is set on building a life that is truly her own.

When asked what she thought about the lifestyles of such personalities as Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton, Gonzalez replied, “It’s nobody’s place to judge anybody’s life. I just feel like they are in the public eye… I don’t know what they are going through in life. I don’t know what’s making them do the things they are doing now… As far as Lindsay Lohan, her actions I think right now are kind of pathetic, but I am no one to judge.”

Presently, Gonzalez is busy with her modeling work for Seventeen Magazine. She has also signed an endorsement deal with the Southpole clothing company, among others.

-Lisa Claustro, BuddyTV Staff Columnist


(Photo Courtesy of The CW)