HC Media Donates Scholarship Support to Northern Essex Community College
For the fifth year, Haverhill Community (HC) Media has donated to Northern Essex Community College allowing three recent graduates of NECC’s journalism/communication program to each receive a $5,000 scholarship.
The three recipients, Shaina Richards and Kimberly Whiting, both of Haverhill and Chad Gorham of Newbury, are all transferring to four-year universities where they will pursue a bachelor’s degree. All three recipients graduated with high honors in May 2016 with an Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Arts: Journalism/Communication.
“We’ve had a really wonderful collaboration with Northern Essex for many years, and we’re thrilled to again offer this scholarship which will help local residents pursue their dreams,” says Darlene Beal, executive director of HC Media, who is herself a graduate of NECC and sits on the NECC Alumni Board.
Richards, who will attend Northeastern University in the fall, has many journalistic accomplishments to her credit including hosting a television show on HC Media’s HCTV; serving as a staff editor on NECC’s award-winning student newspaper, the “NECC Observer”; and serving as master of ceremony of the student, free-speech, and public speaking event, “Speechapalooza”.
“During her time at Northern Essex Community College, Richards has become one of the most impressive and influential students on campus,” wrote NECC Journalism/Communication Professor Amy Callahan, who nominated Richards for the scholarship. “She takes a leadership role in everything she does and has met all her increasing responsibilities with dedication, skill, and high ethical standards.”
UMass Amherst is where Whiting is headed this fall. A nontraditional student with a full course load, she
juggled a full-time job, family, wrote for the “NECC Observer”, and freelanced for the Newburyport Daily News. Her full-time job was delivering newspapers. Most notably
Whiting served as editor-in-chief of the “NECC Observer”
“The editor-in-chief guides the paper through all its practical aspects, such as organization and production,” wrote Mary Jo Shafer, faculty adviser, the “NECC Observer” and adjunct journalism instructor. In nominating Whiting for the scholarship she wrote, “The student who takes on this role must be independent, confident, self-motivated and able to lead and inspire others. Kim has done this so effectively; she has made the overall quality of the newspaper better and inspired her fellow students to rise to various challenges. This is a daunting role at any time…I have felt comfortable relying on her to get the paper done by deadline…”
Gorham is enrolled at Fitchburg State University for the fall. Also a nontraditional student, he was active with NECC student engagement, an orientation leader and community volunteer, who was involved in numerous student groups, including the Gay Straight Alliance. He also volunteered as the NECC Knight mascot. He served on the Student Senate, most recently as president. He was a member of the “NECC Observer” staff.
“Chad cares deeply about the campus and the importance of an independent student press. He has covered stories of compelling interest to the other students here and he has also discovered a deep passion for journalism and communications. It has been a joy to watch him grow and discover his talents and continue to expand his skills,” wrote Shafer, who also nominated Gorham for the scholarship.
The scholarship is just one of the many ways that HC Media is partnering with the college to enrich the experiences of its students. Several employees of HC Media currently teach communications courses on campus and at the HC Media studio, where many students go on to serve as production volunteers.
The Associate in Arts Degree in Journalism/Communication Option at NECC prepares students for careers in the fields of print and broadcast journalism, corporate communications, public relations, and more. Students may choose from one of several concentration areas. For additional information, please visit the NECC website.
“Establishing a scholarship is a very effective way of giving back to the community since the great majority of our students are from the Merrimack Valley,” said Jean Poth, vice president of institutional advancement at Northern Essex. “Our students are deeply appreciative of HC Media and of our other generous donors.”
To establish a permanent endowed scholarship, donors must make a minimum pledge of $10,000. For more information, contact Poth at 978 556-3624 or firstname.lastname@example.org.