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Laura Dahl, Director
P.O. Box 430, Goodwell, Oklahoma 73939
Phone: 580-349-1354 * Fax: 580-349-1350
Email: lola@opsu.edu
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Shayla Koehn played “Amazing Grace” on the alto sax during the talent competition at Miss OPSU. – Jeff Flanagan photo

**For Immediate Release**
Higher Education Important to Miss OPSU
- released by OPSU Campus Communications 02-15-07
by Laura Hays

Goodwell, Okla. - Oklahoma Panhandle State University freshman student Shayla Koehn never saw herself as a “pageant girl,” and on Friday, February 2, she was surprised to find herself named Miss OPSU.

Miss Koehn had not planned to enter the contest, but supported by some of her friends, she decided to compete just to experience a new challenge. She said, “Winning the pageant was very unexpected, but I discovered how much fun the process is. All of us supported each other, and I would like to encourage other young women to compete.” The Miss OPSU pageant is a qualifying event for the Miss America competition, which means that Shayla will compete for the Miss Oklahoma title this June. In addition, she received a full tuition OPSU scholarship for the 2007 fall semester and the 2008 spring semester.

Shayla promotes the pursuit of higher education as her platform, and this ardent advocate has already been working with Eric Begley, OPSU’s Director of High School and Community Relations to advance her cause by visiting high schools and career fairs, and also plans to join Student Senate. She believes education is important because it provides a more stable future. Koehn points out that those lured by what they perceive as high-paying jobs right out of high school do not enjoy the permanence of an education, and they need something to fall back on in case of life-altering events such as illness or the collapse of an entire industry.

A nursing major who graduated from Goodwell High School in May of 2006, she plans to pursue a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing and then attain a Master’s. This multi-talented young woman is a member of the nationally recognized OPSU Cheer Team and plays the alto saxophone. In addition to promoting higher education during her reign, she will also represent OPSU in various civic and community functions and will crown next year’s Miss OPSU.

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