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Finalists

Erin Kathleen Burks
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Erin Kathleen Burks is a junior at Ravenswood High School. She loves music, the sciences, and tennis. She might best be described as stubbornly determined. As early as age two, if circumstances or people tried to hold her back, her response was always “just you watch me.” In these few short years she has received numerous awards as a soloist including multiple selections for state honors recital, top Royal Conservatory level five vocalist for the state of Ohio, and placement in state Chamber and All-State choirs every year. She studies voice and piano and is active in a variety of performing arts activities including four school choirs, marching and concert band, and her church choir. As an athlete, she enjoys working out at the local gym and is an avid tennis player. She is seeded second on the varsity tennis team, playing singles and first doubles. Erin has been an active member of student council, serving as freshman and sophomore class vice president. In that capacity, she has assisted with school dances, football games, parades, blood drives, etc. She volunteers in her community participating in Ravenswood’s long standing adopt-a-family tradition, working as a festival volunteer, and singing at nursing homes. Erin spends part of her summers working at Charleston Area Medical Center as a junior volunteer. In addition to all of the above, she maintains a demanding class schedule and competes with the high school quiz and science bowl teams. She is currently ranked number one in her class with a GPA over 4.0.

Jayson William Chappell
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A Junior at Oak Glen High School, in Hancock County, New Cumberland, WV, Jayson Chappell has 120 hours of community service by volunteering with the American Cancer Society, Hancock County 4-H and the Oak Glen High School Broadcasting/Journalism programs. He is a member and Treasure of the Key Club, Homecoming and Prom Committee, HEROS Ambassador Club, Business Club, and National Honors Society. Jayson is a two-sport athlete, who is a three-year varsity letterman in golf, and a member of the basketball team for three years. His hobbies include: video production, drone videography, filmmaking, media imaging, water & snow skiing, and is a student pilot. Jayson plans on attending the West Virginia Wesleyan College and major in Computer Science and Media Studies, with future plans of becoming a professional Media Broadcaster and a professional pilot.

Zachary Cole Halterman
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Zachary Halterman is a resident of New Creek, WV in Mineral County. He is a junior at Keyser High School with over a 4.0 GPA and in the top 2% in his graduating class. He is Christian in faith and a member of Rees Chapel United Methodist Church. Zach is in the Marching, Concert and Jazz Bands where he serves as the captain of the drum line. He has been a member of the Keyser High School varsity and junior varsity tennis teams for the past three years. He also holds a black belt in American Freestyle Karate. He was a member of the Keyser Middle School class that won WV Mock Court. Zach has served as a Page in both the WV House of Representatives and WV Senate. He is a member of the Math Honor Society and the National Academic Honor Society. He has been a member of RAZE and was a member of and traveled with Hi-Y club to Germany, Switzerland and Austria last year. Zach has represented Mineral County at WV Governors’ School for the Math and Science and will be representing Mineral County again at the WV Governor's Honor Academy this summer. He will also be representing Keyser High School at the American Legion Mountaineer Boys' State in the summer. He received the highest rank in Boy Scouts of Eagle Scout in February and has met the badge requirements for an additional three Eagle Palms. Zachary plans to attend WV Wesleyan College where he will major in the Physics and Engineering dual degree program and go on to complete a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering at West Virginia University.

Thomas Bruce Hughart
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

My name is Thomas Hughart. I am 17 years old, and attend Nicholas County High School where I’m a member of the National Honor Society, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and Younglife. I’m a black belt in Kung Fu, and a volunteer instructor at the Summersville Youth Center. In my spare time I enjoy playing the guitar and cello, and I work at the local Wendy’s. I am also a member of the Birch River Baptist Church. I enjoy chemistry and plan to major in it.

Bailey Dara McInturff
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Recently inducted into her school's chapter of National Honor Society, Bailey McInturff is a well-rounded student and an active member of her community. At 17 years old, Bailey attends Woodrow Wilson High School where she participates in cross country, track, and several extracurricular clubs, including the art club, literature club, and Youth Leadership Association. Bailey volunteers regularly with Operation Underdog, a local animal rescue, and the Humane Society of Raleigh County, and she even runs the Instagram page for Operation Underdog. In her free time, Bailey enjoys reading, writing, running, or cuddling with one of her many dogs for hours on end.

Madison Lynn Robinson
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Hi, my name is Madison Robinson. I am a junior at South Charleston High School where I am in the International Baccalaureate program. I am very active in my community; I am involved in WVSU's Upward Bound program and in my church, Roxalana Gospel Tabernacle. I volunteer with my church and Child Evangelism Fellowship at Good News Club at Dunbar Intermediate where I am a counselor and teacher. I am also a Sunday school teacher at my church and very involved in my youth group. I am a first generation college student who hopes to go to West Virginia Wesleyan to study management then further my education by receiving a master’s degree in healthcare administration.

Amber Lynn Sturgill
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

My name is Amber Sturgill. I was born in Beckley, WV to Jackie Sturgill, an underground electrician, and Rhonda Sturgill, a stay-at-home mom. I have one brother. I attend Shady Spring High School where I am President of National Honor Society, Vice President of Student Council, and Treasurer of Key Club. Outside of school I enjoy participating in community service, playing basketball, painting, reading, and various outdoor activities including hiking and kayaking. As a native West Virginian, I plan to stay in-state for college and develop a career as a Pediatric Physician.

Gavin Corvus Surbaugh
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

My name is Gavin Surbaugh and I am currently a junior at Webster County High School. I have a 3.86 GPA. While attending Webster County High School, I have been involved with a wide array of clubs and organizations that are listed in my application. These involvements show that I am well rounded and have varied interests. The accomplishments I have acquired throughout these involvements are listed, as well. Upon graduation, I plan on attending West Virginia Wesleyan College. This is the college of my dreams and would greatly appreciate your consideration to be chosen as the winner of the WV Scholar Program.

Taylor Morgan Walroth
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Taylor is the daughter of Tim and Lori Walroth of Hurricane, WV. She has two older siblings, Christian, 25, who has special needs and many medical diagnoses that require him to be cared for in home by her family, Paige, 21, who is a graduate of Hurricane High, and a younger brother Isaac, 12, a student at West Teays Elementary. Taylor is a dedicated junior at Hurricane High School; she has taken Advanced Placement and college level classes when given the opportunity and currently maintains a 4.16 GPA and is ranked 5th out of 295 students in her graduating class. Taylor is a three year varsity member of the Lady Redskins’ Soccer Team. She was a varsity runner for both the 2014 and 2015, back to back, AAA State Champion Girls’ Track Team. Taylor was also a contributing varsity runner on the 2014 AAA State Runner-up Cross Country Team. She is a member of National Honor Society, Link Crew, International Club, Chemistry Club, FSEA, Key Club, and DECA (where she won first place in her competing category at the State DECA Competition in 2015, and second place in 2016). Taylor plays soccer for the West Virginia Football Club U17 Girls’ travel team, and also plays on the 2016 West Virginia Olympic Development Program Soccer Team. Outside of school, Taylor works in the nursery at PowerUp Sports and Wellness and enjoys spending time at the gym to stay active and healthy. Taylor attends mass at Catholic Church of the Ascension in Hurricane. In her free time, she loves spending time with her family, as they are the driving force in all that she does. Taylor has a very special bond with her brother Christian, and he is the very reason she pushes herself to stay motivated in life and to take advantage of all that life has to offer. Christian is her inspiration and Taylor lives by the motto, “You Were Given This Life Because You Were Strong Enough to Live It”. Upon graduation from Hurricane High School, Taylor dreams of attending West Virginia Wesleyan College and becoming a contributing player on the Lady Bobcats’ Soccer Team and working diligently to obtain her MSN from Wesleyan’s prestigious nursing program. Nurses and medical personnel have had a direct impact on her brother’s life and are the very reason he is alive today. Taylor wants nothing more than to have that same impact on the lives of others by becoming a nurse.

Chase Patrick Webb
    Parents' Interview >>     Video >>

Chase Webb is a 17 year-old junior at Roane County High School. He has been an active member and officer of the Spencer Challengers 4-H Club for nine years and is currently a Life Scout pursuing the Eagle Scout rank in Boy Scout Troop 437. As a member of the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association (YLA), he has represented his school’s delegation at Model United Nations, Youth in Government, and the YLA Fall Leadership Conference since sixth grade. He enjoys playing the baritone, sousaphone, tuba, and guitar with the Roane County Raider Band, performing in school and community theater productions, and exhibiting livestock as a member of the FFA. He has not yet decided on a college major, but is interested in a future medical or law career.


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