Miss USA Kára McCullough is ready to make her country proud.

With less than a week to go until the 2017 Miss Universe pageant, contestants from around the world are heading to Las Vegas and preparing for an unforgettable night.

E! News had the chance to catch up with Kára before the competition heats up and let's just say the Washington, D.C.-based scientist is in it to win it.

"I'm making sure my mental psyche is very leveled and sane. I try to go to the gym at least three times per week," she shared with E! News at the National Costume Competition held inside the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino Las Vegas. "I'm staying well informed with what's going on in the news because as Miss USA, as a contestant, it's important to always have an opinion about things that are going on."

For those who don't recall, Kára made headlines after she was asked whether she considered affordable health care for all United States citizens a right or a privilege. She would later clarify why she said it was a "privilege."

Kára McCullough, Washington DC, 2017 Miss USA, Winner

Isaac Brekken

Ultimately, Kára is moving forward and preparing for Sunday's live telecast. Several past beauty pageant contestants including Olivia Culpo, Olivia Jordan, Nia Sanchez and Deshauna Barber have reached out to spread some words of wisdom.

"The sisterhood is real," Kára explained. "We really do stick together and when they say pick up the phone and call them, they absolutely mean that."

This year's Miss Universe will be hosted by Steve Harvey with Fergie and Rachel Platten scheduled to perform. Model Ashley Graham will also serve as the backstage host and interact with several contestants.

"I'm a little bit of everything. I'm nervous, I'm excited," Kara admitted to E! News. "I'm just in this area of euphoria right now because I'm still in shock that I get to represent USA at the Miss Universe competition."

When things do get stressful, there is one famous saying that always calms her down. "Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence," she shared. "Always hold on to that because it's going to take you far in life."

Good luck this weekend, Kára. We're rooting for you back home!

The 2017 Miss Universe Competition features judges Jay Manuel, Ross Mathews and Pia Wurtzbach airs Sunday night at 7 p.m. only on Fox.

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