The School of Media Arts and Design awards scholarships in the categories below, totaling approximately $35,000.  The scholarships span a range of criteria such as academic achievement, extracurricular achievement, career promise, financial need and study-abroad plans. (Scholarships are for SMAD-admitted students only, not SMAD-declared.) Winners are announced anually in April at the SMAD Spring Awards Banquet, which is held in the Festival Ballroom.

Seniors graduating in May or August are not eligible for any of the listed scholarships except for the Neckowitz Study Abroad Scholarship which is available for August graduates.

The online application process must be completed by noon on the third Friday in March.

Byrd-Mims Scholar - Incoming Freshmen

The Byrd-Mims Journalism Scholarships were enhanced in 2009 by a $250,000 donation to JMU’s journalism scholarship endowment, from the late Virginia Senator Harry F. Byrd Jr., whose family owns Harrisonburg’s Daily News-Record/Rockingham Publishing. The scholarships honor their benefactor, Sen. Byrd, and his longtime friend and associate D. Lathan Mims, who helped coordinate the senator’s campaigns, and who served for many years as editor and general manager of the Daily News-Record.

Through a competitive application process in Spring 2017, JMU’s School of Media Arts & Design will name its first Byrd-Mims Scholar. A $10,000 scholarship will be awarded to the most promising journalism student who enters JMU as a freshman in Fall 2017. The award, which will be made in four annual installments of $2,500, will recognize the student’s demonstrated commitment to journalism and promise of high journalistic and academic achievement at JMU.

The student selected for the Byrd-Mims scholarship also will receive the competitive Madison Award for Academic Excellence, which provides academic funding of $5,000 per year. In addition, the Byrd-Mims scholar will be directly and fully admitted as a journalism concentration major in the School of Media Arts & Design.

The Byrd-Mims Scholar must enroll for a minimum of 12 hours each semester, maintain a 3.0 JMU grade-point average, and participate continuously in the JMU student media.

The deadline for submitting application materials in the Byrd-Mims Scholar competition is March 1, 2017. Application materials should be saved in the pdf format and sent as email attachments to: Professor Mike Grundmann, grundmmj@jmu.edu.

Available for incoming freshmen.

Byrd-Mims Journalism Scholarships

The Byrd-Mims Journalism Scholarships were enhanced in 2009 by a $250,000 donation to JMU’s journalism scholarship endowment, from the late Virginia Senator Harry F. Byrd Jr., whose family owns Harrisonburg’s Daily News-Record/Rockingham Publishing. The scholarships honor their benefactor, Sen. Byrd, and his longtime friend and associate D. Lathan Mims, who helped coordinate the senator’s campaigns, and who served for many years as editor and general manager of the Daily News-Record.

In 2017, a scholarship of $3,000 will be awarded to the most deserving JMU journalism student. The award is based on commitment to journalism, high academic achievement and possibly financial need. Students may apply as a rising senior. An awardee is expected to enroll for a minimum of 12 hours each semester during the year s/he receives the scholarship. Typically, the scholarship is awarded to a Media Arts & Design major studying journalism. However, the selection committee also considers other evidence of commitment to the profession, including journalism-related coursework, work with campus print media and professional journalism internships. The selection committee may interview finalists for the award.

Digital Video Group, Inc. Scholarship

In 2008 the Digital Video Group, Inc. established a scholarship for outstanding undergraduate student scholars majoring in Media Arts & Design at James Madison University. The scholarship honors the memory of Donnie E. Mongold, a longtime JMU employee. 

The scholarship, which is $1,100 on average, is based on academic achievement and is awarded to a rising junior or rising senior in any SMAD concentration.

John Woody One Day / One University Scholarship

The John Woody One Day/One University SMAD Scholarship is endowed from funds directly earned from special productions by digital video and cinema students in the School of Media Arts and Design.

The scholarship, which is $1,100 on average, is awarded to a rising senior in either the Digital Video and Cinema or Converged Media concentration, based on commitment to media production and academic achievement.

Typically, applicants must have completed or be currently enrolled in SMAD 302 or SMAD 307.  The selection committee also considers other evidence of commitment to the profession, including media production activities such as internships or practica.

Madison Cinema Studies Scholarship

The Madison Cinema Studies Scholarship is endowed by the late Hollywood screenwriter Don Rhymer and his wife Kate, both JMU alumni. The award is based on academic performance and possibly financial need. 

The scholarship, which is $1,600 on average, is awarded to a rising junior or rising senior in the Digital Video and Cinema concentration.

The Neckowitz Study Abroad Scholarship

Established to honor Alan Neckowitz, who was instrumental in founding the Summer in Ireland Study Abroad Program. This account will receive contributions to assist with the expenses of at least one School of Media Arts & Design (SMAD) major studying abroad each year. The awards committee will give first priority to a student with a record of outstanding academic and co-curricular achievement who is enrolled in a program that is taught or directed by a member of the SMAD faculty.

The $500 award is based on academic achievement (financial need is not a consideration).

SMAD Alumni/Professional Advisory Council

Established in 2011, the SMAD Alumni/Professional Advisory Council Scholarships are based on academic achievement. One $1200 scholarship will be awarded. Fully admitted SMAD majors in any concentration may apply. 

Madison Screenwriting Scholarship Competition

The Madison Screenwriting Scholarship Competition is open to Undergraduates majoring in English, Theater or SMAD. 

Submit the following information for consideration:

  • 3 Copies of a short screenplay

  • 15 pages or less in proper screenplay format

All scripts must be original work - No adaptations.

Screenplay format guide: http://www.finaldraft.com/mm_media/mm_pdf/How_to_Format_a_Screenplay.pdf

Due: 5pm on Friday, March 17th - Application materials must be submitted to the SMAD Office Harrison 0276

For more information, contact Professor Kevin Reynolds at reynolkj@jmu.edu

Note: Award money will be credited towards Fall 2017 tuition.

Alison Bailey Parker ('12) Memorial Journalism Scholarship

The Alison Bailey Parker ('12) Memorial Journalism Scholarship honors the passion for life and journalism this alumna exemplified. Criteria for the $2,500 scholarship include grade-point average, involvement in extracurricular journalism and achievement or interest in the broadcast field.

There is no financial-need component for this scholarship.

No application process.

Blanche Garrett Memorial Scholarship

The Blanche Garrett Memorial Scholarship is funded by a donation from Dr. George Johnson and Dr. Marilou Johnson for students newly admitted into the Media Arts & Design major.

The $1,500 award is made based on the scores on the school's admission test for 2017-2018, financial need and grade-point-average.

No application process.

De Luca Journalism Scholarships

The De Luca Journalism Scholarships were created in 2008 in memory of professor Albert “Flip” De Luca of the School of Media Arts & Design, and his late father, Albert D. De Luca, a longtime publisher with Ottaway Newspapers Inc., a division of Dow Jones.

Scholarships of $1,500, $1,000 and $1,000 will be awarded to the newly named editor-in-chief and two managing editors of The Breeze, respectively. Awardees must complete the full academic year in these positions to receive the full amount of the award.

No application process.

Lawrence Cain Memorial Scholarship

The Lawrence Cain Memorial Scholarship Fund provides an annual scholarship in memory of Lawrence Cain, a student who majored in Communication Arts at JMU and who died tragically in an automobile accident in July of 1978.  The scholarship was funded by Mr. Charles R. Kenney, Jr. JMU class of '79 and '83. 

The $3,000 scholarship is open to a rising senior from any concentration.  The student selected to receive this annual award will exhibit academic excellence in the field of Media Arts and Design. 

No application process.

Wendelken-De Luca Endowed Scholarship in Journalism

On behalf of the friends, alumni and faculty of James Madison University, this endowed scholarship fund has been created in honor of Dr. David Wendelken, who served the university and its journalism students for 40 years, and in memory of Albert "Flip" De Luca, who passed away in 2008 after 29 years at the university.  Both individuals played a significant role in many students' lives and started them on their careers.

When the scholarship fund is fully endowed, the Wendelken-De Luca Endowed Scholarships will be presented each year to a rising junior or senior in the Journalism concentration, with a preference to students serving on the university sponsored student newspaper (The Breeze) or student magazine (Curio) staff. 

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