Hauppauge-based marketing, advertising, digital and public relations agency, Austin Williams, awarded its first “Opportunity Scholarship in Marketing/Communications/New Media” as part of its scholarship program on Feb. 15. The scholarship was created in partnership with St. Joseph’s College in Patchogue and Brooklyn and Molloy College in Rockville Centre to provide assistance to minorities and students of color pursuing a career in advertising and marketing.
The first recipient of this $2,500 scholarship is Rockaway Park resident Adrian Santiago, a sophomore marketing major and honors student at St. Joseph’s College’s Brooklyn campus. In addition to the scholarship, Santiago will be interning with Austin Williams for the duration of her junior and senior years.
“I’m honored to have been nominated by my professors and selected by Austin Williams for this incredible opportunity,” Santiago said. “The financial support and exposure to the marketing and advertising world is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to launch my career.”
“At this important moment in history, it’s critical that our actions reflect our words,” said Donald R. Boomgaarden, president of St. Joseph’s College. “This is the kind of practical partnership we need for our students, that not only helps them in the classroom but also as they transition into the workforce. We are grateful to Austin Williams for their generosity in funding this scholarship and impactful initiative to promote diversity and inclusion in the areas of marketing and communications at SJC.”
Founded in 1992, Austin Williams has clients in the healthcare, higher education, financial services and professional services industries. New York State has certified them as a Women Business Enterprise. They were one of the 100 fastest-growing agencies in the United States and have placed in multiple iterations of “Great Places to Work” by various publications and companies.
“We’re thrilled to be helping students like Adrian and do our part to make advertising a more diverse industry,” said Eva LaMere, president of Austin Williams. “Every ad agency has an obligation to do something tangible that enables young people of color to pursue a career free from barriers. We’re walking the walk and we invite other agencies to do the same. We want this program to be replicated.”
Austin Williams first launched the scholarship program toward the end of 2020 and hopes to award more than $100,000 in scholarships to students in universities attending a four-year program once fully implemented. Students awarded with any of the scholarships within the program will be mentored by an Austin Williams employee, and juniors and seniors will have the opportunity to intern with the company.