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Model with muscular dystrophy is new face of Beyonce's fashion campaign

/ Source: TODAY

Models continue to break barriers in the fashion world, proving that diversity is a good thing.

And Jillian Mercado is no exception — the IMG model was recently revealed as the face of Beyonce's new merchandise campaign. Mercado, who uses a wheelchair and has muscular dystrophy, shows off the star's new T-shirts, hoodies and accessories online.

Fans have responded in a big way, praising Beyonce for casting Mercado, and the model herself for being "beautiful inside and out," as one commenter wrote.

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"Wait *pinches my arm* yup, all this is happening," Mercado wrote on Instagram, sharing links to news stories about her role in the merchandise campaign.

Mercado, who signed with IMG Models in August (the same agency that recently announced a plus-size division for men called "Brawn") got her big break when she appeared in a Diesel campaign in early 2014.

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"I won't sugarcoat it; it's a harsh world to be in," she told TODAY's Matt Lauer at the time, speaking about the fashion industry.

The native New Yorker, who has used a wheelchair since she was 12, is also a fashion blogger and an activist for people with disabilities.