Presidential Scholars Announced

Friday, June 22, 2018

For the tenth consecutive year, three West Virginia high school seniors have been named as recipients of Fairmont State University’s premier academic scholarship, the Charles J. McClain Presidential Scholarship.

The following students have been selected as 2018 scholarship winners:

  • Madeline Puppos of Ranson is the daughter of David and Kimberly Puppos. She is a graduate of Jefferson High School in Jefferson County. 
  • Tyler Sine of Martinsburg is the son of Brian and Christy Sine. He is a graduate of Musselman High School in Berkeley County. 
  • Addison Watkins of Parkersburg is the daughter of Kevin and Stacey Watkins. She is a graduate of Parkersburg High School in Wood County. 

 “Fairmont State University offers many opportunities for high-achieving students, including our three scholarship winners. I look forward to welcoming them to our campus community,” said Fairmont State President Mirta Martin. “As a Falcon, we take seriously our commitment to give our students exactly what they need to be successful in our changing global economy.”

The competitive scholarship includes tuition, room and board and a book stipend. The high school of each of the winners was presented with a plaque featuring its student during the school’s spring awards assembly.

The deadline to apply for the Presidential Scholarship is in February each year. To compete for the Presidential Scholarship, named by the Fairmont State Board of Governors in honor of Dr. Charles J. McClain who served as interim president from 2008-2009, a student must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a West Virginia student who is a member of the Class of 2019.
  • Be a PROMISE Scholarship recipient.
  • Submit a Charles J. McClain Presidential Scholarship application and essay.
  • Complete an admissions file (general application, high school transcript, test scores) prior to the deadline.
  • Have a cumulative high school GPA of 3.5 or higher.
  • Have an ACT composite score of 26 or higher or 1190 SAT (combined Critical Reading and Math scores taken prior to March 2016) or 1260 SAT total score (taken March 2016 and after).
  • Participate in on-campus interviews.

First-year recipients must maintain an overall GPA of a 2.75 at the end of their first year. An overall GPA of 3.0 is required for renewal during subsequent years. A minimum of 30 credit hours must be obtained in a year of enrollment for renewal. The Charles J. McClain Presidential Scholarship can only be awarded up to eight semesters.

Students from across West Virginia who participated in interviews on campus were named finalists. Each finalist will receive the Presidential Finalist Scholarship, which is valued at $1,500 per year and is a four-year scholarship.

The following students were named as finalists:

Berkeley County

Kaleb Johnson of Martinsburg

Boone County

Abigail Harvath of Comfort, Amanda Risko of Pecks Mill, and Madelynn Toney of Ashford 

Brooke County

Alanna Cervenak of Weirton 

Clay County

Ely Osborne of Wallback

Fayette County

Carson Cochran of Clifftop

Grant County

         Jacob Kyle of Moorefield

Hampshire County

         Trevor Shaffer of Yellow Spring

Hancock County

         Shannon Wastfall of Follansbee

Harrison County

         Joseph Caruso of Mount Clare and Halee Hawkins of Bridgeport

Jackson County

Jaclyn Bumpus of Kenna, Lakin Tucker of Ravenswood and Presley Fisher of Ripley

Jefferson County

Deanna Gonzalez of Harpers Ferry and Hannah Seaman of Charles Town 

Kanawha County

         Zachary Arthur of Pratt and Emma Huffman of Tornado

Marion County

Emily Glover of Mannington, Caden Suplita of Fairmont, Tanner Cole of Fairmont and Mitchell Shepard of Fairmont

Marshall County

         Cole Quigley of Cameron

Mercer County

         McKenzi Olonko of Princeton

Mineral County

         Sarah Lollett of Springfield

Monongalia County

         Abbey Ammons of Wana and Drew Hawthorne of Morgantown

Putnam County

         Madison Chadwell of Hurricane

Randolph County

         Abigail Boggs of Beverly

Tyler County

         Scottlynn Straight of New Martinsville

Wetzel County

         Tyler Simms of Littleton

Wood County

         Laura Sturm of Parkersburg

All PROMISE Scholars also are eligible to participate in the Honors Program, which provides students with the opportunity to deepen their academic experience through smaller classes taught by some of the University’s finest faculty, field trips in the United States and abroad and extracurricular activities on and off campus.

“Honors students find that studying and socializing with other like-minded students helps them to make the most of their university experience,” said Dr. J. Robert Baker, Director of the Honors Program.

For more information, call (800) 641-5678 or (304) 367-4010 or visit For more information about scholarship opportunities at Fairmont State University, visit