By George Mauzy
Chelsea Toy, an Ohio University senior journalism major in the Honors Tutorial College, is one of two recipients of the 2009 David L. Stashower Visionary Scholarships in Communications.
The $2,000 scholarships are annually awarded by advertising and public relations firm Liggett Stashower to two communications students attending an Ohio college or university. The scholarships are named in honor of David Stashower, former chairman of Liggett Stashower.
Established in 1998, the scholarships are merit awards based on academic achievement, faculty recommendations and documentation to support the applicant's request for consideration. Students majoring in advertising, graphic design, public relations or communications at Ohio colleges or universities are eligible.
"This scholarship money really helps my family and I cover my out-of-state tuition," Toy said. "I knew that winning an award from a company like Liggett Stashower would be a huge addition to my resume, because it reflects my interest in public relations."
To apply for the scholarship, Toy had to submit a recommendation letter, transcript of her grades, and a self-written letter explaining why she deserved the award. A selection committee selected the winners after reviewing the applications.
Liggett Stashower recently hosted Toy and her family for lunch and a tour of its offices in Cleveland. She said the experience allowed her to make connections at the company that will help her career.
"The Liggett Stashower staff is so friendly," Toy said. "I know that I will be able to count on them for advice and references as I work my way through the job search."
Last year, Toy won the nationally competitive Roy W. Howard National Collegiate Reporting Award. The award provided her with a two-week all-expenses paid trip to Japan and South Korea in June, which allowed her to network with media professionals and learn more about the history and culture of the countries.
Toy, a native of Apollo, Pa., has completed journalism internships in Cape Town, South Africa and Washington D.C. She also is a past recipient of the Lasher-Evarts Quality of Writing Award, Copley Newspaper Association Scholarship, Scripps College of Communication Scholarship, Dean's Scholarship and the Sarah Katherine Ullman Internship/Scholarship.
Toy, who has a 3.98 G.P.A., serves as a student ambassador and campus tour guide for the Scripps School of Journalism. She also is a founding member of the Ohio University African Languages Society and works as a campus reporter for the Athens News.
"Chelsea is an outstanding student who stood out as a star from the first day she arrived on campus," said Thomas Hodson, director of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. "She is an ardent worker and a fierce competitor who excels at everything she does — from barrel racing to running down a prize winning story. She has literally limitless career possibilities."