Karolyn Martin, a recent graduate of Appalachian State University in Boone, was named Miss North Carolina 2022 this past Saturday, becoming the second Mountaineer in a row to attain the celebrated honor. Carli Batson, Miss North Carolina 2021 and, like Martin, a May 2022 Appalachian graduate, crowned her successor at the conclusion of the festivities in the High Point Theatre. A third App State grad, Hannah Harvey, Class of 2020, was named Miss Congeniality 2022.
Martin, representing Metrolina in the competition, promoted her social impact initiative of “#SelfKare: Eat to Success,” aiming to teach the community to eat in a way that fuels our minds and bodies to success while taking the focus off of weight and appearance. She performed “This is the Moment” from the Broadway musical “Jekyll & Hyde during the talent portion of the evening, and will compete at the 101st Miss America Competition.
The newest titleholder graduated last month from the Honors College with a BS in Communications Studies and a minor in Marketing. Martin was recently hired as a Customer Service and Support Specialist in our Career Development Center and is applying to law schools for admission.
Batson also graduated in May 2022 with a degree in Communications (Public Relations concentration) with a Theatre minor and was Co-Captain of our App State Dance Team.
Harvey was a double major in General Theatre and Secondary English Education currently teaching at W. D. Williams Elementary in Swannanoa and hoping to return to Appalachian this fall to begin studies for her master’s degree in education.
All combined, the three women received over $75,000 in scholarships throughout the competition, a fact that Batson proudly notes. “Because of this program, I’ve become the first college graduate in my family and have done so debt-free.”
“I first met Karolyn as a student at Appalachian,” said Batson. “We were both enrolled in the theatre and dance department and had many classes together. We began our friendship on a study away trip with the department to New York City in December of 2018. What I didn’t know then, was that Karolyn would soon start her journey in the Miss America Organization, where she would be able to show her kind spirit, talent, and intelligence on stage and in our North Carolina communities. It was an absolute honor to crown her the 84th queen of the Tarheel State and I know that she will represent North Carolina with such class and care at the annual Miss America Competition this winter.”
Batson devoted her year-long reign to North Carolina Art programs with her social impact initiative, “Carolina Cares; Supporting the Needs of Performing Arts Communities.” In the last three years, Batson has raised over $30,000 for rural arts programs in the Tar Heel state and has inspired countless young artists to dream big, no matter the cost.
Speaking about her former classmates and friend, Batson said, “To know Hannah Harvey, is to love Hannah Harvey. She is a woman of intelligence, strength and beauty, and it was no surprise that she was named Miss Congeniality. Hannah represents the heart of the Miss America Organization by supporting the accomplished women around her and nurturing young minds by encouraging them to follow their dreams every day in her classroom.”
Friends and colleagues of the newest titleholder celebrated her success on campus, in Boone, and across the state. “Karolyn Martin wows us every day in the office with her endless energy and positive attitude,” said Jennifer Shaffer, Interim Director of Appalachian’s Career Development Center, and Martin’s supervisor. “She’s been a great addition to our team, and an asset to the customer service and support she holds in our office. Her fun and spunky personality makes her so relatable and accessible to students. She’s also a go-getter – a characteristic I observed from her first day with us when she walked through the door ready to hit the ground running with new ideas and the desire to contribute to the team. I’m so proud to see her hard work and perseverance pay off. I know being crowned Miss North Carolina is dream come true for her & that kind of grit and determination sets such a good example for other students who have big goals.”
To become Miss North Carolina, a 19-26 year old candidate must first enter and win a local competition—a process requiring hard work, talent and personal commitment. As a local titleholder, a candidate may go on to compete at the annual Miss NC Competition.
As an official state preliminary associated with the Miss America Organization, the Miss North Carolina Organization is a part of the largest scholarship-providing organization for women in the world. Promoting an emphasis on academics and communication skills, the MNCO is considered a launching pad for young women to further their academic and career goals.
For more information about the Miss North Carolina Organization, please visit their website at www.miss.nc.org.