KICK STARTING HER FUTURE: Owens lands karate scholarship to Bryan College

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, October 18, 2017

By: Lacey Stinson

A Straughn senior, Kila Owens, has won numerous grand championships in Isshinryu Karate, even a world championship, has now added to her list of accomplishments a full ride scholarship to Bryan College in Dayton, Tenn. The college is a private Christian college.

Owens started karate when she was 13 at Isshinryu Karate. She trained with Mark Rudd for four and a half years.

“The dojo motto is ‘iron sharpens iron,’ and it’s really true,” Owens said, “I always pushed myself, and I always got help from others in the dojo.”

A dojo is a karate studio or school where one trains in karate.

David Holcomb recently helped create the martial arts academy at Bryan College. This is the program’s first year.

“I’ve scouted Kila since July. She is the top female recruit, and she will be teaching and training with our program,” Holcomb said, “She shows all the core values Bryan is searching for. She has a strong desire for excellence and pure determination.”

Holcomb came to her tournaments and became interested in her skill, he offered her a tour of the college, and from there, Owens knew that this was where she wanted to go.

“I want to eventually own my own dojo,” Owens said, “One day, I’d like to bring Isshinryu to an area that doesn’t offer it.”

Within her four years at Bryan, Owens hopes to only become better at Isshinryu, and continue to further her degree in karate. She also wants to educate in another way, as a teacher at a school. Owens plans to visit Japan, specifically Okinawa, as well as Brazil. She plans to visit back at Isshinryu Karate in Andalusia, and train and lead the class regularly when she’s home in the summers.

What started out as a chance to learn self-defense at the age of 13, turned into a career for this tough-witted 18-year-old girl.