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2011 Winner Jan Sharp Says Degree of Success Scholarship Contest Changed My Life

KNOXVILLE, Tenn., Oct, 15, 2015 – Knoxville, Tenn., native Jan Sharp had dreams of being able to do more to make the educational experience better for the students with which she worked at Pellissippi State Community College. In 2011, Sharp met a representative from King University who encouraged her to take a chance with a scholarship program the School was offering in the Knoxville area. Sharp did just that, and in Nov. 2011, she was named the winner of the Degree of Success Scholarship contest, which subsequently changed her life.

Sharp says her life has gone through a major transition. “I would have never continued my education because I didn’t think I could afford school. [All of the changes in my life] can be traced directly back to winning the Degree of Success Scholarship. It not only changed my life but also has benefitted my family’s lives greatly.”

After winning, Sharp entered King’s Bachelor of Business Administration program, and in May 2013 received her degree. After having fit the program into her everyday life, she knew she could not stop there. She immediately began classes in King’s Master of Business Administration program, and will graduate with her MBA with a specialization in Management this coming spring in May 2016.

In 2011, Jan Sharp will tell you she worked full-time as a mother of four, including a set of twins, and part-time as a supplemental instruction leader and math tutor at Pellissippi State Community College. Because of her lack of a bachelor’s degree, she was unable to progress further in her position.

During a perchance meeting with King University Enrollment Counselor Samantha Lane, Sharp learned of a contest specifically geared to adults who wanted to continue their education through King University’s Graduate, Professional, and Online Studies (GPS) program. She thought, “This is my chance! Samantha showed me how easily I could fit school into my life – just one night a week I could do. And, winning the scholarship took monetary concerns off the table. I didn’t think I would really win but win I did!”

After receiving her BBA, Sharp was promoted to full-time as the coordinator of supplemental instruction and math tutoring. She is currently responsible for the hiring of all math tutors for all five Pellissippi campuses.

“In the end, I hope to teach. I love Pellissippi and plan to continue on there,” says Sharp. “I would also love to teach part-time as an adjunct professor at King University in the School of Business. I want to pay it forward as much as possible.”

For those who think they may want to go back to school, whether to advance their career or change career paths, Sharp says, “Go for it! If you don’t, the only thing holding you back from succeeding in life is yourself. Make it happen!”


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 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.