Contact: Jeff Weaver, Melony Ritter
(501) 760.6410 office

January 13, 2016


Hot Springs, Arkansas – The National Park College (NPC) Foundation announced the recipients of the 2016 Van Davis Memorial Scholarship today. Amanda Poole and Kelley Ryals were each awarded a $1,000 scholarship.

Amanda graduated from Lake Hamilton High School in 2013 where she participated in concurrent credit classes through NPC. She credited Scholarship Coordinator, Matthias Elder with helping guide her through the scholarship process. Amanda hopes to complete a teaching degree so she can help students to “excel in life and prepare them for a better future.”

Kelley completed his Arkansas High School diploma through the NPC Adult Education program. He was awarded the GED scholarship, which allows all NPC GED graduates to attend NPC with a half tuition discount. He is grateful for his older sister and NPC student, Ashley Hennessee for always encouraging him. Kelley is enrolled in the Automotive Technology Program and looks forward to a career working with tools and doing what he loves.

The Van Davis Scholarship is a competitive scholarship that is awarded to a first generation college student with a cumulative GPA between 2.0 and 3.5. Students are required to complete an essay, which is reviewed by the Faculty Senate Scholarship Selection Committee. The scholarship was created to continue the legacy established by Dr. Van Davis. Dr. Davis was an esteemed member of the NPC faculty and Chair of the Social Sciences Division, teaching students for nearly 38 years and inspiring them to use their drive, passion, humor and intellect to succeed at earning college degrees. He cared for his students deeply and shared joy in their successes as scholars and human beings. Often he provided personal scholarships to individuals in need, many of whom were first generation college students.

The scholarship Van Davis Scholarship Recipients, 2016is funded with proceeds from the Annual Van Davis Memorial 5K Run/Walk. Over the past three years, the event has contributed more than $31,000 to the scholarship endowment. Presenting sponsors for this year’s race include The Sentinel-Record, Morgan Stanley, and Henderson State University. Gold sponsors include The Munro Foundation, and Alliance Rubber. This year’s event is set for February 20, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. at Whittington City Park. Registration information can be found at

Photo: Left to right, Amanda Poole and Kelley Ryals, Van Davis Scholarship Recipients.

National Park College was established in 1973 and is located in Hot Springs, Arkansas. The College enrolls nearly 4,000 credit and non-credit students per semester. NPC is a comprehensive two-year institution offering associate degrees and certificates as well as continuing education, community services and workforce training. Read about our campus initiatives here.