Giving Thanks: Fellowship Helps Journalism Major on Journey to Produce News and Teach

by | Nov 9, 2019 | Faces of Fulbright, In Their Own Words, Scholarships, Student Success

This November, members of our Fulbright College Family are sharing expressions of gratitude, letters of thanks and their appreciation for those who have helped make their educational journey possible. 

Meet Mary Ellis, who thanks to the Pearson Educational Foundation Fellowship, is one step closer to making her dream of becoming a broadcast news producer and professor a reality.

Pearson Educational Foundation Fellowship Recipient
Mary Ellis

Hometown: Conway, AR
Anticipated Graduation: 2019
Major(s)/Minor(s): Majoring in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in History
Activities/Interests: News Director of UATV News and a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, Gamma Nu chapter
Career Aspirations: I want to be a news producer and eventually become a professor, focusing on producing

In her own words:

I want to begin by thanking the Charles Thomas and Mary Alice Pearson Education Foundation for this incredible honor. I cannot express enough how excited I am to begin my journey toward a master’s degree. I would not be able to achieve this without your generosity.

Since I was a young girl in Central Arkansas I dreamed of coming to the University of Arkansas. When I arrived on campus in the Fall of 2016 I found broadcast journalism. I immediately fell in love with the work style and flow of a newsroom. It not only felt like the perfect fit, it also pushed me to become a better writer and stay calm in a fast-paced work environment.

I am majoring in Broadcast with a minor in history. I have found that, as the saying goes, history repeats itself. Something I enjoy is finding similarities between today’s current events and what happened in the country’s past.

After my graduation in December, I will begin working toward my master’s with a focus in AD/PR. I plan to be a producer in a professional newsroom. I am excited to have the opportunity to experience living in many different places and adapting to the different cultures across the country. Like the amazing journalism professors I’ve had the honor of learning from here at the University of Arkansas, my goal is to teach a new generation of journalists.

Without this fellowship, I would not have the opportunity to work toward my master’s degree while saving for my future. The Pearson Fellowship will allow me to continue my education while being able to set money aside for post-grad life.

I will have the luxury of not having to worry about how I will pay my tuition and fully immerse myself in my school work. I am excited for the opportunity to be free of the stress of finances to solely focus on being the best graduate student I can be and soaking up the amazing education opportunities the U of A offers.

Thank you again for this honor. I feel so blessed to be able to continue my education with the help of an amazing foundation. I believe this fellowship will change my future. I will have every opportunity to pursue the careers I want and eventually use what I have learned in my graduate years to further the education of future journalism students.


Mary Ellis

For more information about the Pearson Educational Foundation Fellowship, or to make a year-end gift to support it, please give online now, or contact Fulbright College’s Office of Development and External Relations at 479-575-3712, or email


Andra Parrish Liwag

Director of Communications, J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences 

479-575-4393 //