LAS VEGAS - Miss District of Columbia Ashley Boalch has been awarded the Miss America pageant's first journalism scholarship in the name of late Associated Press writer John Curran.
The $1,000 scholarship to the University of Maryland student was announced during a non-televised portion of the competition Saturday night in Las Vegas.
The scholarship goes to a non-finalist studying journalism. The 23-year-old Boalch will seek a master's degree in communication.
Pageant officials established the scholarship in Curran's honor after he died of a heart attack in September at his home in Vermont at age 54. He covered the Miss America pageant for more than a decade as AP's Atlantic City, N.J., correspondent.
The pageant originated in Atlantic City and moved in recent years to Las Vegas.