PARKERSBURG - A high school student from Vienna has won an online voting competition for a full scholarship at West Virginia Wesleyan College.
Kathryn Quillen, a senior at Parkersburg High School, was the winner of the seventh annual MVB Bank West Virginia Scholar competition for a full four-year scholarship to Wesleyan, including tuition, fees, room and board, starting in the fall 2015. The value is $125,000.
"I have two sisters, so it would have been hard on my parents to pay for all of us," Quillen said. "This scholarship makes it easier on my sisters and my parents, and it helps me to be one step closer to my dream of going to med school. I am so thankful to all the sponsors who have made this dream a reality."
Kathryn Quillen poses with her full scholarship from W.Va. Wesleyan she won in the MVB?Bank West Virginia scholarship competition.
Quillen is the daughter Lora and Scott Quillen.
Winning the scholarship lifts a financial burden from her family, especially since she has aspirations of attending medical school and becoming a dermatologist.
"This scholarship will help Kathryn enter graduate school with no debt," her father said. "Katie is a one-on-one person, and I know she will get that kind of attention here at Wesleyan rather than a large university. We are in shock and so grateful."
Ashley Walker of Clarksburg, a student at Liberty High School, was named first runner-up and won a $5,000 four-year renewable scholarship to Wesleyan.
Second runner-up was John Goellner of Morgantown, a student at Trinity Christian School. Goellner won a $2,500 four-year renewable scholarship to Wesleyan. Walker plans to study nursing while Goellner will enter into the pre-med program.
Quillen, the captain of the PHS volleyball team, is the oldest of three sisters.
Online votes for three finalist began May 26 and ended last week. Voters chose from the finalists in a selection process that started in February.
Funds for the West Virginia Scholar are provided by the Culpepper Wesleyan Scholars Award and by West Virginia Wesleyan. The Culpepper Wesleyan Scholars Award was established in 1991 as an endowed scholarship fund by Olive O'Dell Culpepper and C. Ross Culpepper and Marvin and Elaine Karnes Culpepper.
"This program brings some of the brightest students in West Virginia to our campus, and we are happy to provide this opportunity to them," college President Pamela Balch said. "We are particularly pleased with one of the college's greatest benefactors Marvin and Elaine Culpepper and the sponsors."
Along with MVB Bank, the West Virginia Scholar program is sponsored MVB Bank, MetroNews, the West Virginia Forestry Association, the West Virginia Hospital Association, the West Virginia Home Builders Association and Friends of Coal.