William I. Ray Jr. Scholarship Recipient, Grady College
The William I. Ray Jr. scholarship was established in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication in 1998 through a designated gift in William I. Ray Jr’s will. Intended to aid journalism students, the scholarship has no specific stipulations other than it enhances their educations.
Ray was a UGA graduate who was named outstanding alumnus of Grady in 1979.
Ray’s life’s work was dedicated to journalism, beginning when he served in the Army in 1936 and worked for the Fort Benning Herald. In 1969, he was honored to be named to the juries for the Pulitzer Prize in News Photography and Feature Photography.
He retired in 1976 as President of the Atlanta Journal and Constitution after four decades in the newspaper business.
“The chance to take advantage of such an experiential learning opportunity is why we [students] choose to come to the University of Georgia.”
For Emily Clary, receiving the William I. Ray Jr. Scholarship meant the opportunity to experience the Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity in France. The Festival, a five-day conference celebrating innovation in brand communications, advertising and marketing, draws bright, talented people from all around the world. UGA’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication features a study-abroad opportunity that includes a week of classes on either side of the Festival. The year that Clary attended, the Festival had a gender equality theme, and it just so happened that all sixty students from Grady that year were women.
UGA has one of the biggest student presences at the Festival. Because Grady professors have been making this trip for many years, they have forged connections and relationships that allow students access to unique learning experiences created just for them.
Clary was most excited to learn about the campaign for the Dot-Mini, a portable Braille translator that converts digital text into Braille using AI. Because of Clary’s involvement as a volunteer puppy raiser for the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind, this campaign resonated with her. In her role managing the Dawgs Raising Dogs social media accounts for the Athens puppy raising group, she had to learn ways to make the group’s social media content accessible to both sighted and visually impaired audience members, so she understood the significance of the Dot-Mini technology, and was excited to see it being marketed well enough to be considered for a Lion.
Besides the learning opportunities afforded Clary through the classes and Festival events, she also seized the chance to travel in the area surrounding the groups’ home base of Juan les Pins, France. Short train rides took her to places such as Monte Carlo, Aix-en-Provence (France’s famed lavender fields) and Antibes, France, where she toured the Musee Picasso, which includes works by Joan Miró, Germaine Richier and others in addition to Picasso. None of this enrichment would have been available to her without the scholarship.