A scholarship the Stambaugh family won last year wasn't like most.

A scholarship the Stambaugh family won last year wasn't like most.

Although it provided a life-changing education, the Stambaughs didn't sit in a classroom for lectures.

The family of four lost more than 200 pounds total after receiving a scholarship at UltimateU. The family was honored by local officials with a dove release Saturday.

The New Albany business wants to award another scholarship to a person or family who wants to make a serious change.

"The scholarship program is designed to help people who have been struggling with weight issues and health issues for a long time and feel like they've tried everything," UltimateU owner Zoe Guirlinger said. "It's not necessarily an amount of weight as much as it is a way of thinking. I'm looking for folks who think they're out of places to turn."

Dianna and Lawrence Stambaugh and their children, Nicole and David, said they lost their weight through major changes in eating and exercise habits. Specialized programs and support from UltimateU also were major factors, they said.

Guirlinger said the scholarship winner will get that same personalized approach and can have access to a physical therapist and dietitian on staff.

"What's so different about our approach is that we're partnering with experts," she said. "Most attempts at losing weight are from a problem-solving attitude. Whenever we approach something that way, all work becomes a chore.

"If I exercise, it's punishment for the problem I have," Guirlinger said. "What we work with folks on is, we don't problem solve; we create."

The approach at UltimateU has worked for people who have failed with other methods, Guirlinger said.

"It breaks my heart because I talk to thousands of folks a year," she said. "They're so demoralized about their weight. Everybody's feeling like that. When you switch the creative process, it gives hope."

UltimateU, 5791 Zarley St., has begun taking nominations and hopes to have a winner chosen by July.

"We will have the nomination process through the Web site. Folks can nominate people online," Guirlinger said. "It does require commitment on that person's part. It will be a person who can make changes in life. It's a time commitment -- a good three times a week for exercise and the educational piece."

Guirlinger said a panel of local residents and officials will choose the winner.

For more information, visit www.ultimateu.org.