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NCAA committee awards Jim McKay Scholarship

Tulsa rower Emalia Seto wins $10,000 for postgraduate study

An NCAA committee has selected Emalia Seto, a communications major on the women’s rowing team at The University of Tulsa, as a recipient of the 2016 Jim McKay Scholarship.

The $10,000 scholarship for postgraduate study recognizes student-athletes’ outstanding academic achievement and their potential to make a major contribution to the sports communication industry. It was created in 2008 to honor the legacy of pioneer sports journalist Jim McKay.

Emalia Seto, a 2016 Jim McKay Scholarship recipient

“Emalia has an incredible future ahead of her in the field of athletic communications,” said Northeast Conference Associate Commissioner Andrew Alia, chair of the NCAA Walter Byers Scholarship Committee, which selected Seto. “She is insightful, extremely well-spoken and passionate about being a leader on both her college rowing team and in her future career endeavors.”

Seto said her experience as a team captain of a Division I rowing team and as a rower for the U.S. national team influenced her desire to work in sports communications and helped develop her leadership skills.

“I am preparing for a career in communications that gives me the chance to continue to give back to athletics and work with athletes to reach their goals,” she wrote in her application essay.

She hopes to eventually work in communications for a university athletics department or for an athletics team. Seto already has some real-world communications experience as a news intern at an ABC television station in Tulsa, Oklahoma; as a writing intern at the public relations firm Sharpshooter Communications; and as a communications intern at WPX Energy. This spring, she has an internship at Saxum, a marketing communications agency.

Seto, who is minoring in sociology and has a 3.61 GPA, plans to pursue a master’s degree in strategic communications, public relations or organizational communication after her graduation from Tulsa in May. While in grad school, she also would like to use the skills she learned as a rower to help young athletes in junior rowing programs. 

“My goal is to contribute to the city I am in and continue my passion for athletics by staying involved in rowing as a volunteer and mentor coach,” she wrote.

The Walter Byers Scholarship Committee typically awards two recipients for the Jim McKay Scholarship but was able to identify only one this year.