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SI Swimsuit model Samantha Hoopes: 'I am proud to be an American'

Blonde bombshell Samantha Hoopes has sizzled as a GUESS Girl, a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit pinup and even as a burger-loving Carl’s Jr. star — but the title she may be most proud of is American.

“I am proud to be an American,” said the 26-year-old model to Fox News. “I appreciate other cultures, which is why I love modeling because I get to explore the world. I get to experience how other people live. But I’m just so proud to be an American because people here don’t realize we actually have so many more rights than other countries. Women are treated way differently here than in a lot of other countries. ”

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Hoopes first found fame as a coveted GUESS Girl when she moved to Los Angeles at age 22. The Pennsylvania native previously attended Penn State to pursue a teaching career. However, things didn’t go as planned, and she decided to take a chance on doing something completely different.

“I thought this school was for me, but down the line, I was feeling depressed,” she told Fox News earlier this year. “I don’t know, I just didn’t think the school and I really clicked. I was out of school for like almost a year and my mom told me she was going to find me a job. I was freaking out; I had no idea what to do. So I took Polaroids and sent them. That’s why my whole career [as a model] got started.”

The bold move worked. Hoopes’ career quickly skyrocketed and she now has a better appreciation of the lessons her struggles provided. 

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“I feel proud that we have the liberty and freedom to do whatever we desire and how we can stand up for something if we don’t agree with it,” she said.

These days, Hoopes is looking forward to what may come her way.

“Of course, my loyalty will always be with GUESS… I hope to work with Sports Illustrated again,” she explained. “I’ve done so for the past four years, so fingers crossed! You just never know. They’re always an exciting phone call away. But I do see myself branching out and doing more TV. Maybe a little acting, depending on the role. But I’m definitely not an actress. I’m barely a model. I literally have no idea what I’m even doing. I’m just excited for the future.”

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