Monday, February 15, 1999

isle student will
lose scholarship

A Houston firm says
there is no money to pay the
$10,000-a-year scholarship
that she won last year

Melanie Fields was a Star-Bulletin
Super Student, Jan. 1998

By Rod Ohira


Kalaheo High's 1998 valedictorian Melanie Fields is among 51 of the nation's brightest students who won't receive a college scholarship promised by a Houston-based company.

"In one letter, three sentences, he crashed all of my hopes," Fields said of a Jan. 8 letter from AdamsVision founder Val Adams.

The letter notified her there was no money to pay out the $10,000-a-year, four-year renewable scholarship she won in 1998.

"He's taking away something that was promised," added Fields, who made the Dean's List last fall in her first semester at Chapman University in Orange, Calif. "I cannot continue going to Chapman unless I can find another scholarship to cover the $10,000."

Fields, an aspiring film producer, said she stopped applying for other scholarships when she was awarded the AdamsVision scholarship.

Students from 49 other states and the District of Columbia are scrambling to find financial aid after the AdamsVision scholarships fell through.

Calls to AdamsVision were being referred to Houston attorney Dale Jefferson, who was unavailable for comment today.

John Boone, a prosecutor with the Harris County district attorney's office, doesn't think the students should hold their breath about getting scholarship funding from AdamsVision.

Boone described Adams as a habitual criminal, convicted of theft for writing bogus checks on six different occasions. Adams remains on probation for a 1993 case.

Adams acknowledges his criminal past but maintains the scholarship effort was on the level. He notes that the students were not asked to pay an application fee or provide any money, something the students and their parents confirm.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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