June 26, 2007 -- New York City — An audience of over 100 print professionals gathered at Conde Nast headquarters in Times Square on June 19 to join in the presentation of Graphic Communications Scholarships to 22 metropolitan area college students who are pursuing graphic arts careers.
Ranging in size from one thousand dollars to five thousand dollars, each scholarship was sponsored by a different company within the graphic arts community. Half of the 22 awards went to students who are entering college this fall. The other 11 were presented to students who are already pursuing their college degrees at some of the nation’s top schools.
The scholarship program is conducted by the Graphic Communications Scholarship Award and Career Advancement Foundation, a non-profit that encourages leading corporations in the industry to develop professional and educational opportunities for graphic arts students.
The unique format of the event featured a different presenter for each scholarship. The speakers overviewed their careers to give the students first-hand perspectives on the many disciplines they can pursue within the industry, ranging from sales to design, and from editorial to production. Printing firms, publications, paper companies, technology suppliers, and marketing and advertising agencies were all represented by the presenters.
Jerry D’Elia, Vice President/Director of Hearst Magazine’s Manufacturing and Distribution Department, set the mentoring tone of the event with an inspirational keynote address. Among his words of advice to the scholarship winners:
“Each and every day, you should have a dream. And don’t let anyone take that dream away from you.”
“Compete, but don’t compete against others. Compete against yourself.”
“Make as many contacts as you can, and keep them along the way.”
“Try to get exposure to the whole process as much as possible, so you know how your part in the process works.”
“There times in life and in business when we need to compromise, and that’s okay. But never compromise your integrity.”
“Always reach for the stars, because if you miss, you’ll still hit the moon. And that’s not bad.”
D’Elia closed his remarks by having the students applaud their parents for the support and encouragement they provide. “They are very proud of you, and so are we,” he said.
The students themselves had some words of appreciation for the foundation and for the industry. Andrew Sawyer, winner of the Hearst Magazines Scholarship Award, represented the honorees who are beginning their college careers this autumn.
“I find this award incredibly exciting because of all the positive feedback I’ve been given,” said Sawyer, who will be attending the University of Delaware. “I see the work being done by everyone in this room to be influential in shaping the world in which we live.”
“Thank you everyone in this wonderful organization for your support,” Sawyer continued. “I promise to work as hard as I can to make you proud. I hope that I will be successful enough in this industry to be giving an award like this to future generations.”
Those sentiments were shared by Sally F. To, who represented scholarship winners who are already in college. A second-time recipient, To will be graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2008. “I am very grateful to the foundation for supporting students like myself,” she said. To closed her remarks by reading Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken,” a poetic underscore of her decision to pursue a career in graphic communications.
Mark Darlow, president of the foundation, served as master of ceremonies of the event, and presented several of the scholarships. He thanked the companies and corporations that sponsored the awards and contributed to the festivities.
“Without them, our foundation wouldn’t exist, and neither would the opportunities our industry offers,” he said. “Our sponsors are investing in the future of the graphic arts, which is represented by students we are honoring here tonight.”
Conde Nast provided the venue for the event. Other corporate sponsors included Quark, which gave each scholarship winner a full version of QuarkXpress and the company’s Print Collection imposition software. Pantone provided copies of its benchmark color formula guides to the scholarship recipients. And Partnership in Print (P3) donated full one-year memberships to the honorees so they can take advantage of the organization’s courses and networking opportunities.
This year’s 22 scholarships is the highest number of grants since the competition began five years ago. The winners were selected by a panel of industry leaders, who reviewed the students’ SAT scores, samples of their work, and essays that reinforced their commitment to graphic arts careers.
Set for Next Year
Applications for the 2008 edition of the Graphic Communications Scholarships will be accepted starting next year. The competition is open to any graduating high school student who has:
- taken Graphic Communications courses,
- has been accepted into a college anywhere in the country, and
- is pursuing an education in Graphic Communications from:
- the five boroughs of New York City,
- the New York State counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester and Rockland, or
- the New Jersey counties of Bergen and Union.