SCOM Requests Distinguished Alumni Award Nominations

It’s that time of year again, when the School of Communication Studies Community Committee has the opportunity to select another accomplished alumnus to receive the Distinguished Alumni Award. The committee is accepting nominations and self-nominations for this award until February 16, 2015.

Meghan Ely

Meghan Ely,          Class of 2003

“I would encourage alumni to consider applying—if anything, it’s a great exercise in reviewing your goals and general career direction,” said Meghan Ely, 2003 SCOM graduate and last year’s Distinguished Alumni Award winner, when asked why alumni should self-nominate, “It never hurts to be a bit introspective from time to time. Awards help professionals stand out when faced with a saturated market and it’s nice to have an added competitive edge.”

The Distinguished Alumni Award is presented every spring to an alumnus who makes exceptional contributions to their discipline or profession and demonstrates outstanding service to the School of Communication Studies, James Madison University, their community, region or nation. The winner of the award will receive up to $1,000 in travel and accommodations to attend the SCOM banquet on April 8, 2015, where they will be recognized for their dedication and growth in the communications field.

The JMU SCOM community continues to grow and alumni play an integral role in the success of current students. Dr. Eric Fife, SCOM Director and SCOM alumnus class of 1990, encourages all students to continue their involvement in the JMU community long after graduation. Listen to the podcast for a special message from Dr. Fife regarding the Distinguished Alumni Award.



Meghan Ely reflected upon her new connections after winning the award in 2014.

“Most importantly, it [the award] gave me the opportunity to connect with my alma mater in a new way,” continued Ely,  “I loved the idea of having my personal story serve as an inspiration to students who may have not quite found their own path yet and could potentially benefit from seeing someone out there making things happen.”

Students, faculty, staff, and alumni are able to send in nominations for the Distinguished Alumni Award. Not an SCOM alum? You can still nominate if you know an SCOM alumnus that is inspiring in their contributions to their career field and to the JMU community. Please nominate them. Your nomination will grant them an opportunity to not only be recognized for their achievements, but connect with the JMU community in a whole new fashion.

Nomination packets must include a cover letter, two letters of support, and a resume or curriculum vitae. All materials should be submitted to the Assistant Director of Communication Studies, Dr. Toni Whitfield, at the following address:

c/o SCOM Assistant Director

54 Bluestone Drive, MSC 2106

Harrisonburg, VA 22807

Material may also be submitted via email to