Virginia College in Pensacola Student Wins $5,000 Astellas Scholarship for Essay About Kidney Transplant

Sep 28, 2010

PENSACOLA, Fla. -- September 30, 2010 - Michelle Davis, a 44-year-old studying healthcare reimbursement at the Pensacola campus of Virginia College, was recently awarded a $5,000 scholarship from Astellas Transplant. She was one of 12 individuals recognized by the Astellas Transplant Scholars Award, which was given to transplant donors and recipients who have honored the gift of life by pursuing further education and giving back to the transplant community.

After 18 years of hospital visits due to renal disease, Davis learned she would be the recipient of a kidney transplant on Christmas morning in 2007. The Mayo Clinic Transplant Team in Jacksonville performed her kidney transplant and post-transplant treatment. The success of the procedure allowed Davis to return to school at Virginia College, which she described in her scholarship essay.

Davis wrote, "I have always desired to return to college but my health did not permit me to do so. Now that I have a new lease on life, I have returned to the educational arena at Virginia College-Pensacola in the pursuit of my associate degree in the field of healthcare reimbursement. This discipline concentrates on medical billing and coding and therefore keeps me closely connected with the medical field. I am currently in my second quarter and I expect to achieve the President's List as I did in the first quarter."

For more information about the scholarship program and to read Davis' essay in its entirety, visit

About Virginia College and Education Corporation of America
Birmingham, Alabama-based Education Corporation of America is a leader in the post-secondary career school market with current enrollment of over 17,000 students. Holdings include Virginia College, founded in 1983, a private institution of higher education that offers non-degree and associate's, bachelor's, and master's degree programs in the areas of Health and Medical, Business, Information Technology, Interior Design, Computer Design, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, and more with locations thirteen different cities. Virginia College campuses are located in Birmingham, Huntsville, Montgomery, and Mobile, Alabama; Jackson and Biloxi, Mississippi; Pensacola and Jacksonville, Florida; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Augusta, Georgia; Greenville, Columbia, and Charleston, South Carolina; and Austin, Texas. The Virginia College web site is Virginia College also offers classes worldwide via the Internet, and operates Culinard, the Culinary Institute of Virginia College, with campuses located in Birmingham, Alabama, and Jacksonville, Florida. ECA also owns and operates the Golf Academy of America schools ( in San Diego, California; Phoenix, Arizona; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; and Orlando, Florida; and Ecotech Institute in Denver, Colorado (, the first and only college focused on preparing students for careers in renewable energy and sustainable design.

ECA schools are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).