Miss USA advances to top 16 in Miss Universe

Associated Press

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Miss USA Olivia Culpo is one of 16 contestants advancing to the finals of the 2012 Miss Universe contest.

The 20-year-old from Cranston, R.I., is one of 89 contestants vying for the worldwide title Wednesday night at the Planet Hollywood casino on the Las Vegas Strip.

She wore a tight navy blue mini-dress with a sequined bodice as she walked on stage for the opening number of the competition.

Culpo is a sophomore at Boston University and a self-described "cellist-nerd." She was the first Miss USA winner from Rhode Island when she took the national crown in Las Vegas in June.

The top 16 contestants were chosen from preliminary competitions during the two weeks leading up to Miss Universe.

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