SUNY Cobleskill Student Wins Women’s Press Club of New York Scholarship

Heather Knott, a senior Communication in Technology student at SUNY Cobleskill, has been named the winner of a prestigious scholarship from the Women’s Press Club of New York for high-achieving women studying journalism in college.

Knott competed against students from across the state for the exclusive scholarship.

“I feel very honored to be the recipient of this scholarship, particularly because it is so closely related to my field of interest,” Knott said. “I am very grateful their generosity and for the opportunity to focus more on my studies than the financial burdens of college.”

The scholarship is awarded annually to one student who lives in New York and studies in a communications-related field. Applicants must demonstrate clear career goals, academic achievement, writing ability, and leadership skills.

“Heather is so deserving of this prestigious scholarship,” said Erik Hage, Professor and Liberal Studies Department Chair at SUNY Cobleskill. “She is an exceptional student — her empathy, her intellectual curiosity, her journalism acumen, and her writing ability place her in the top 1 percent of students with whom I’ve worked.”

Knott is a leading student in the Communication in Technology BS program at SUNY Cobleskill, with a near-perfect GPA. She founded and edited a student-run literary journal on campus, has made repeated volunteer trips to Haiti, spent a semester in Spain, and serves as a student ambassador and writing tutor on campus. She has published articles in Teen Ink, including two that received editor’s choice awards and one that was published in the print magazine.

“I am very grateful for the opportunities this scholarship affords me,” she said. “Having spent a lot of time volunteering in third world countries, I am acutely aware of how fortunate I am to receive a higher education and work hard to maintain my GPA at a 3.8 or higher.”

Knott will be recognized at the Women’s Press Club of New York State‘s Annual Awards and Scholarship Dinner on September 28.

After graduation, she plans to apply to graduate schools to study comparative literature and pursue a career in writing, both journalistic and creative.

The full press release from the Women’s Press Club is below:

The Women’s Press Club of New York State Announces Scholarship Recipient

Heather Knott, from Cobleskill, NY, to be Honored at September Annual Dinner

Annual Awards and Scholarship Dinner on September 28 Focuses on Women of Distinction in the Media and in the Field of Journalism/Communications Whose Work is Making a Difference

ALBANY, N.Y. — The Women’s Press Club of New York State (WPCNYS) is pleased to announce that it will present SUNY Cobleskill student Heather Knott with its 2017 Betty Flood Morrow Women’s Press Club of NYS Scholarship for $1,000 during the WPCNYS’ Annual Awards and Scholarship Dinner at 6 p.m. on Thursday, September 28, 2017, at Treviso by Mallozzi located at the Italian Community Center in Albany, N.Y.

Heather Knott, daughter of William and Eileen Knott of Cobleskill, is a senior in the communications program. Heather is a zealous reader and writer, and has supported the literary arts on campus by starting an online literary journal and tutoring in the Writing Center. Her writing has been featured in Teen Ink, a national publication for teens.

Throughout her academic career, Heather has demonstrated a deep commitment to her education also enjoys giving back to her community both locally and internationally. She has volunteered in Haiti on multiple occasions teaching English and working on clean water projects. When closer to home she tutors literacy. Most recently she spent a semester abroad in Valencia, Spain studying Spanish.

“Heather is an excellent student, and possesses the strength, drive and commitment to the field of communications that the Women’s Press Club of NYS looks for in a are looking for in our scholarship candidates,” said Lauren Halligan, the WPCNYS’ Vice-President for Scholarships. “In reviewing applications, the WPCNYS Scholarship Committee was impressed with Knott’s academics and extracurricular endeavors, as well as her unique writing style displayed in her essay about First Amendment journalistic rights.”

“It is truly an honor to receive this scholarship and I am very grateful for the opportunities it affords me,” Knott said. “Having spent a lot of time volunteering in third world countries, I am acutely aware of how fortunate I am to receive a higher education and work hard to maintain my GPA at a 3.8 or higher. After finishing my last semester at SUNY Cobleskill, I plan to apply to graduate school to study comparative literature and hope to pursue writing–both journalistic and creative — as a career.”

The presented annually in the name of Betty Flood Morrow, a co-founder and longtime supporter of the Women’s Press Club of NYS, who passed away last December. The owner of Cuyler News Service and Legislative Correspondent for decades, Flood was a lifelong and fierce advocate for women in journalism and helped to start the WPC scholarship program. The first scholarship was awarded in 1967 to a student studying at the Syracuse University School of Journalism. In 2012, the Women’s Press Club renamed its annual scholarship the Betty Flood Morrow Women’s Press Club of NYS Scholarship to memorialize her dedication and preserve her legacy. The WPCNYS has awarded more than 60 scholarships to deserving students with exemplary records of study and a commitment to a career in the communications field.

“We encourage students who meet the criteria to apply for the Betty Flood Morrow Women’s Press Club of NYS Scholarship which is presented annually to a New Yorker who is enrolled as a full-time student majoring in journalism/communications in a college or university located in New York State,” said WPCNYS Co-President, Deborah Sturm Rausch. “It is our goal to support young women in our field by presenting this scholarship, by mentoring and by providing an opportunity to network with active members of the media and communications professionals. We congratulate Heather Knott on her academic achievements, and hope she will become involved in the WPCNYS as she pursues a career in the field.”

Knott will accept her scholarship in person at the Annual Awards and Scholarship Dinner on September 28 along the 2017 Annual Awardees who will also scheduled to be honored at the event. This year, the WPCNYS awardees are: television journalist and Hall of Honor inductee Chris Jansing; Melissa Hale Spencer, Altamont Enterprise Editor, receiving the award for Media Person of the Year; Tracy Ormsbee, formerly of the Times Union and now publisher of the Adirondack Explorer, receiving the award for Excellence in Career Achievement; and U.S. Senator Kirstin Gillibrand, and Barbara Bartoletti, the recently retired Director of Legislative Affairs for TheLeague of Women Voters, with awards for Woman in the Media.

Given the popularity of the honorees, the WPCNYS has opened ticket sales to the public in addition to WPCNYS members. People of all genders are welcome, and one does not need to be a member of the media or in the field of journalism to attend. Tickets are $46 for members and $49.50 for non-members, by meal selection. Details and a strict refund policy are available on the Event Brite reservations page. Information is available at or  Reservations may be made through Event Brite at


About the Women’s Press Club of New York State, Inc.

The Women’s Press Club of New York State, Inc. is a nonprofit organization formed in 1966 by a small group of women journalists committed to supporting women in journalism and communications. Today, the organization’s members include women and men who work for radio and television stations, digital media, newspapers, government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private companies, as well as freelance writers, entrepreneurs and students. The WPCNYS provides support, professional development, programming, mentoring and networking opportunities for New Yorkers in the field. Further information may be found on Facebook at or WPCNYS website at

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