AMES, Iowa—The late Joanne M. Will, former food editor for the Chicago Tribune and public relations practitioner for Hill and Knowlton and J. Walter Thompson, had intended to establish a scholarship at her alma mater but passed away before she could bestow her gift.
Her sister, Dorothy Marston, who also earned a journalism degree from Iowa State’s Greenlee School, now is honoring her legacy by establishing an endowed scholarship for PR students.
The endowment will ultimately provide several $1,000 scholarships each year for Greenlee students earning degrees in the discipline.
“We are so grateful for the generosity of Joanne and Dorothy,” said Michael Bugeja, Greenlee director. “They are professional role models for our students. They used their Iowa State degrees to launch exciting careers in media and business.”
Will, a 1959 graduate, also was an ISU Foundation Governor and earned the university’s Alumni Association’s Alumnae Medal in 1994 for her outstanding service to the university. Marston, a 1955 graduate and long-time supporter of the Greenlee School, enjoyed a successful career at Morgan Stanley.
“The PR scholarship is especially needed at this time,” Bugeja said. In 2013, the Greenlee School established a degree in public relations. The major has grown from a few dozen to more than 300, necessitating the need for more scholarships.
The PR faculty at Greenlee are excited by the news.
Senior Lecturer Erin Wilgenbusch, APR (Accreditation in Public Relations), said, “One of the hallmarks of Greenlee’s public relations degree is the high level of professionalism our students possess when they graduate. Scholarships allow students to take internships and develop those professional skills, rather than worrying about how to pay for school.”
Associate Professor Gang Han says scholarships “help us retain PR majors,” enabling instructors to work closely with them in advising and the classroom “and turn the classroom into a workplace where students learn about the profession.”
Associate Professor Suman Lee echoed the sentiment, noting that “scholarships mean a lot to students because they make them feel valuable members of the Greenlee community and motivate excellence.”
The Greenlee School awards more than $200,000 in scholarships and internship support each year, thanks to the generosity of benefactors like Joanne M. Will and Dorothy Marston.