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BRISTOL, Tenn., April 11, 2017 – King University and 98.5 WTFM announced Carleigh Hewa of Kingsport, Tenn., as the
winner of the 12th annual College Dream scholarship promotion. The contest was open to anyone who sought
the chance to make their dream of a college education a reality through a full-tuition
scholarship to King University.
“We are thrilled to make Carleigh’s college dream come true by offering her the opportunity
to pursue a bachelor’s degree at no cost,” said Mona Salyer, assistant vice president
of Enrollment Management Graduate & Professional Studies Tri-Cities at King University.
“She will be able to complete her major coursework in a workable and convenient environment,
one night a week. We know Carleigh will serve as an inspiration to other aspiring
students that it is never too late to pursue the dream of a college education.”
Hewa will pursue a Bachelor of Science in Psychology degree offered through King’s
Graduate & Professional Studies program featuring class schedules and learning environments
designed for working adults.
Hewa’s initial response to the live on-air announcement that she was indeed the winner
of a college scholarship to King University was, “Words cannot express how excited
I am. This has been a dream of mine to go back to school and finish my degree. I’m
just over the moon right now.”
Hewa was one of five finalists including Elizabeth Baumgardner of Bristol, Va.; Tasha
Cleveland of Kingsport, Tenn.; Denise Morin of Bristol, Tenn.; and Lisa Ann Whisman
of Keokee, Va.
WTFM listeners were asked to vote from March 31 through April 7 for the individual
they believed should win the contest.
Hewa attended King out of high school but was unable to finish due to unfortunate
family circumstances. “The last time I left King's campus, I promised I would be back
one day to finish what I started,” said Hewa. “In the years since I left King I have
been busy pulling myself up by my bootstraps. I waited tables and worked retail to
put myself through Virginia Highlands Community College. I continued to spend time
with the friends I'd made at King, and I ended up meeting my husband, Lance Blaylock,
who is also a King alumnus. I graduated from VHCC and got a job at Lawson and Hatch
Financial Services in Abingdon. I took my Life and Health insurance exam in 2015.”
Hewa added, “My life has been unpredictable at times, but I have been determined to
make the best out of every situation I found myself in. I have worked hard for everything
I have. This path is not the one I chose. I believe this path chose me. I have become
stronger and wiser in the years since I left King, but I never forgot my promise.
One day I would come back.”
In addition to her full-tuition scholarship to King, Hewa will also receive her textbooks
at no cost as well as a $50 gift certificate from the King University Tornado Alley
Contact the Office of Admissions at 800.362.0014 or visit gps.king.edu online for more information about King’s Graduate & Professional Studies programs.
King University is a Presbyterian-affiliated, doctoral-level comprehensive university. Founded in
1867 as King College, the University offers more than 90 majors, minors, pre-professional
degrees and concentrations in fields such as business, nursing, law, medical and health
sciences, pharmacy, education, and humanities. Graduate programs are offered in business
administration, education, and nursing. A number of research, off-campus learning
opportunities, and travel destinations are also available. King University is a NCAA
Division II and a Conference Carolinas member with 25 varsity sports. For more information
about King University, visit www.king.edu. King University does not discriminate against academically qualified students of
any race, color, national or ethnic origin, sex, age, or disability. King University
is certified by SCHEV to operate locations in Virginia. For more information on SCHEV
certification, contact the King University office at Southwest Virginia Community
College, 309 College Road, Richlands, VA 24641.