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Newton High grad receives arts guild's Hayes Cardinal Scholarship
Heartland scholar
From left are Scholarship Fund Chairperson Jan Baulkmon, scholarship benefactor Lisa B. Hayes, recipient Kiersten Foster, and Cindy Murphy, Margaret Warfield and Elise Hammond, all of the Southern Heartland Art Guild's James P. Hayes Cardinal Scholarship committee with some of Foster's artwork. - photo by Special to The News

COVINGTON, Ga. — Kiersten Foster, a 2022 graduate from Newton High School, recently was awarded an $800 college expense scholarship from Southern Heartland’s James P. Hayes Cardinal Scholarship Fund. 

The daughter of Helena and Carl Foster, Kiersten completed the Academy of Liberal Arts Program at Newton High School, finishing in the top 10 of her graduating class.

Kiersten’s artwork was displayed at local businesses on the Covington Square, in the media center at Newton High School, and at the Newton County Board of Education.

Kiersten’s impressive resume came to the attention of Janice Baulkmon, chair of the scholarship committee for Southern Heartland Arts, Inc, Newton’s nonprofit visual arts organization, whose mission includes art instruction and provides scholarships for college bound graduating seniors who plan to major in the visual arts. 

Kiersten’s resume stated what members of Southern Heartland Art Guild believe, that art is a window to the soul. 

“I have used my art to release emotions, display my goals and ambition, and showcase my dreams,” she wrote. 

Kiersten worked in the Newton County Little Scholars Program last summer, and it confirmed to her a desire to impart her love of visual art to children. Kiersten will be attending West Georgia, majoring in art education.

Southern Heartland Arts, Inc. has been providing art scholarships to children and graduating seniors since it’s inception in the 1980’s; the creation of the James P. Hayes Cardinal Scholarship Fund, which was created by his widow, Lisa B. Hayes, has allowed SHA to increase the number of scholarships awarded as well as the amounts provided each recipient. 

Scholarship applications for graduates interested in careers in the visual arts are available at Southern Heartland Art Gallery on the Covington Square and on the website at

Kiersten Foster
From left are Lisa B. Hayes, benefactor of the James P. Hayes Cardinal Scholarship Fund, and 2022 scholarship recipient Kiersten Foster and her mother, Helena Foster. - photo by Special to The News