The Press Club of Southeast Texas recently contributed an additional $15,000 to the Lamar University Foundation endowment that provides for the Press Club Memorial Scholarship at Lamar University.
The endowment, established in 2002, has grown to become the largest endowment for communication majors at LU. Scholarships are awarded each year to outstanding Lamar University communication students in the College of Fine Arts and Communication.
The Press Club, incorporated in 1969, first established the scholarship in 1980 in memory of Jennie Love, a broadcast newswoman and active member who was serving as Press Club secretary at the time of her death. In the years since, the scholarship was renamed the Press Club Memorial Scholarship and the list of those honored by the award expanded to include other deceased members — all veteran area journalists and active Press Club members.
Today, the Press Club Memorial Scholarship honors deceased members including James Shannon, Bill Leger, Gordon Baxter, Harold Beeson, Joe Broughton, Lela Davis, Richard Dixon, Sharon Englade, Amelia Feathers, Jennie Love, Bill Maddox, Bill Maultsby, Earl Newlin, Ralph Ramos, Martha Reed, Jim Turner, Bob Wolcott, and Jim Wright.
Among its many activities to foster excellence, the Press Club hosts an annual Excellence in the Media contest, the Newsmaker of the Year Award, and monthly programs on newsworthy topics. The Press Club’s monthly luncheon program meetings are generally held on the third Thursday of each month.
“We are glad to be able to help support the studies of future communication professionals as they earn their degrees at Lamar University,” said Kevin Steele, president of the Press Club and a news anchor at KBMT Channel 12 in Beaumont. “The communication department selects outstanding students for the award each year.”
The Press Club of Southeast Texas draws its membership from Jefferson, Orange, Hardin, Liberty, Chambers, Jasper, Tyler, Polk and Newton counties. Press Club members are professionals in media, public relations, academia, public affairs, corporate communication and public information. LU communication students are eligible for membership in the Press Club and can participate in the annual Excellence in the Media competition.
“We are happy to include student participation in the competition,” Steele said. “The success of many LU students in the annual competition shows not only their individual talents, but also the caliber of education they’re receiving at Lamar.”
The Press Club of Southeast Texas seeks to advance the art and science of media in the public interest; to encourage research, discussion, and study of the problems and techniques of the communications professional; to strengthen and maintain the highest standards of service and ethical conduct by all members of the profession; to exchange ideas and experiences and collect and disseminate information that may enhance or improve the professional knowledge, standards, ethics, and standing of the membership; to foster educational excellence among communication students; to provide a public forum for issues and ideas; to support the Public Information Act (Open Records/ Meetings Act) and encourage compliance; and to promote fellowship within the profession.
To learn more about the Press Club, visit pressclubofsoutheasttexas.org, or Press Club of Southeast Texas on Facebook.