Makayla Jade Gillaspie, a senior at Keyser High School, has been awarded a $10,000 per year Citizens Bank of West Virginia Emerging Leaders Scholarship to Davis & Elkins College for a total of $40,000 over four years.

Davis & Elkins College, Citizens Bank of West Virginia and WDTV partnered for a third year to offer the unique scholarship competition. All 2024 West Virginia high school graduates, whether attending a public, private or homeschool, with a 3.25 or higher GPA were eligible to apply. Impressed with the high caliber of applicants, College officials decided to offer multiple scholarships in addition to the selection of one student who received a full, four-year scholarship.

Applicants were required to submit a list of high school and community activities, along with an essay based on the topic, “If you receive this scholarship, how will you pay it forward to the state of West Virginia?”

Gillaspie is the daughter of Shelley and Bryan Rhodes of Burlington. At Keyser High School, Gillaspie is a member of the Key Club, Mineral County Future Farmers of America, and DECA. She is a 4-year volleyball, basketball, and softball team member. She has a cumulative GPA of 4.03828, has made the Honor Roll all four years of high school, was selected for the National Honor Society and National Technical Honor Society, and awarded perfect attendance each year. Gillaspie is a member of Skills USA and the Keyser Krazies. She is highly involved in community service, and in her spare time, she is a waitress.

At Davis & Elkins College, Gillaspie plans to major in Nursing.

Davis & Elkins College offers more than 40 academic programs. Multiple scholarship opportunities are available including the College’s annual $5.4 million investment in West Virginia students. For additional information, call 304-637-1230 or visit