Lee senior Courtney Breaden will appear on “Wheel of Fortune” as part of its annual “College Week” this Thursday at 7 p.m. Ms. Breaden, an English education major from Marietta, Ga., grew up watching the show with her mother and finally got the opportunity this spring to be on the other side of the screen.
“We always talked about how cool it would be to be on the show,” said Ms. Breaden. “I applied online and got an email about a year and a half later.”n“Wheel of Fortune” asked Breaden to send in a video interview and from that she was invited to audition in Atlanta.
Mr. Breaden asked Lee University President Dr. Paul Conn to pay for her plane ticket to California during a Lee “Ask the President” chapel, where students are encouraged to ask the president anything they want. Dr. Conn agreed to fund her ticket if she had the opportunity to go. One week before filming, Breaden received a phone call from “Wheel of Fortune” staff affording her that opportunity.
On Feb. 13, Ms. Breaden, along with her fiancé and fellow Lee student Jordan Ramos, her brother, and a friend, flew to Los Angeles for filming.
“I was a little intimidated when I arrived because all of the other contestants were from Ivy Leagues and big state schools,” said Ms. Breaden. “I was proud to represent Lee among them all.”
Ms. Breaden spent all day filming on Feb. 14 and became good friends with the other contestants, but the highlight of her experience was meeting Pat Sajak and Vanna White. “It was a really fun experience,” said Ms. Breaden. “It went by fast and seems like a big blur now.”
A viewing party for Breaden will be held on April 10 at 7 p.m. in the Paul Conn Student Union on Lee’s campus.
Ms. Breaden will graduate from Lee in May with hopes to teach high school English and eventually become a guidance counselor. She is currently student teaching at Ooltewah High School. At Lee she is involved in Epsilon Lambda Phi, Pi Kappa Pi, Sigma Tau Delta, and Kairos Scholars, Lee’s honors program.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for Courtney,” said Alan McClung, dean of students at Lee. “I know she will do great on the show, and I look forward to the results.”
Ms. Breaden and Mr. Ramos are set to be married in August. If money is won from the show, they hope to put it towards a down payment on their first house.
To tune into the show check your local listings. For details on the viewing party contact Brie McDaniel at 614-8405.