Alumna Whitney Drolen is now reporting live on CBS in Dallas, TX.  With visions of working on TV fueling her young high school career, the Chicago native brought her dreams to life by leveraging the medium itself – by winning her tuition through a TV game show!

I love this story of television dreams gone larger than life:

Whitney Drolen is the traffic anchor for CBS 11 News This Morning, weekdays from 4:30 to 7:00 a.m. She joined CBS 11 in July 2012 from CBS-owned stations KCBS and KCAL in Los Angeles, where she reported on crazy Southern California traffic.

A native of Chicago, Whitney was raised in Ventura, California, and as a young woman had her heart set on attending Chapman University in Orange, California. However, tuition costs were prohibitive for her family, so a motivated Whitney devised a plan. She decided she would become a contestant on “Hollywood Squares” and win the money to pay her college expenses! She called three times a day, every day, for weeks and eventually got an audition. Not only did she get on the show, but she won $16,000 and received her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from Chapman University in Orange, California in just three and a half years!

While the metropolitan traffic may not be everyone’s favorite subject, Whitney’s energy and enthusiasm make it a positive experience – even before your morning commute.  She proves you’re never too early to start dreaming, and to always pursue what you love with a passion.

What’s the wildest thing you would do fund your degree?

Read Whitney’s entire bio on the CBS blog.