Jim McKay Scholarship

The Jim McKay Scholarship was established in 2008 by the National Collegiate Athletic Association. It was established in honor of sports journalist Jim McKay. Each year, one male and one female student are awarded a scholarship of $10,000. The recipients most demonstrate the “highest level of professional integrity, including the principles of truthfulness, accuracy, objectivity, impartiality, fairness and public accountability, with the element of compassion that so infused McKay’s long and storied career.”

There are quite a few guidelines for this scholarship, including having a grade point average of 3.5 or better, having competed on a varsity team at a NCAA institution, and be enrolling in a graduate program at an NCAA institution within five years of receiving this scholarship. Applicants may be nominated by only the faculty athletics representative or the chief academic officer of the institution in which they are enrolled. There is no limit on the amount of candidates an institute can nominate. The Jim McKay Scholarship is open to athletes participating in any sport, in any division. United States citizenship is also not required to be eligible for this scholarship. Financial need is also not considered upon granting this scholarship, and awards from other sources will not disqualify an applicant.

The Jim McKay Scholarship: Honoring A Leader In Sports Communication

Jim McKay achieved many things during his career as a sportscaster. He hosted multiple television shows, and covered 12 Olympic games. He is also well known for this reporting of the Munich massacre at the 1972 Summer Olympics. He reported this on his only scheduled day off during the Olympic Games, and was on air for 14 hours straight during a 16 hour broadcast. He received two Emmy’s for his reporting of the Munch hostage situation, one for sports reporting, and another for news reporting. It is obvious why those who receive The Jim McKay Scholarship must be held to a high standard.

The application process for The Jim McKay Scholarship is quite intensive. Besides the initial nomination, three more recommendations are required. The applicant must also submit a personal essay outlining their goals, both long and short term. They must also explain their aspirations in the communications field, and why they have the potential to make a strong contribution in the sports communications industry. Also required are lists of activities, honors, and involvement in community activities. Though this application process is intensive, the rewards are great. It is an amazing opportunity for anybody interested in pursuing a career in sports communication.

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