YPSILANTI – According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2021 report, although women hold nearly 73 percent of all public relations management jobs, only 10.7 of those roles are held by black or African Americans, who represent 13.4 percent of the overall population. To help reverse this trend, Eastern Michigan University's former student Brittni Brown created the Brittni L. Brown Book Scholarship with EMU’s Black Alumni Association (EMUBA) to support African American public relations and undergraduate journalism students.
“As a past EMUBA scholarship recipient, I understood the importance of giving back and creating opportunities for those looking to create their legacy,” said Brown. “With this scholarship, my goal is to aid in financial and professional support as students progress throughout their college careers and beyond.”
Brown announced her first-ever scholarship recipient on January 21 at EMUBA Day in the George Gervin GameAbove Center. The award was capped at $1,200. Recipient Erin Flynn is a senior majoring in media studies and journalism with a minor in public relations and is a writer for the University’s newspaper, The Eastern Echo. She is a senior who plans to graduate in December 2023.
“I felt so much gratitude after receiving the Brittni L. Brown scholarship because it really made a difference to my time here at EMU,” said Flynn. “I was able to use the money towards school which helped me become one step closer to graduation. I couldn't be more thankful and am honored that Brittni chose me as her scholarship recipient.”
Brown is the founder and principal publicist at The Bee Agency Public Relations, an award-winning, internationally recognized public relations agency. She was named “One of the Top 25 African American PR Millennials to Watch” by HuffPost through her work and commitment to redefining the communication industry. In addition, she is responsible for encouraging and aiding in developing emergent public relations professionals looking to excel in their careers.
As a former EMU student, Brown is no stranger to engaging in impactful programs that help to encourage students to study public relations. She served as president of the Black Student Union and co-founder of EMU Fashionality. She was also initiated as a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Xi Chapter, where she served as vice president of civic programming for Eastern’s National Pan-Hellenic Council. In addition, the Bee Agency launched an internship program that trained and gave EMU students hands-on experience. The internship allows students to work and be involved in day-to-day agency operations.
“Over the years, Brittni has demonstrated her support of our public relations and journalism students in numerous ways,” said Lolita Cummings, professor of public relations at EMU. “She has served as a guest classroom lecturer, a speaker at EMU’s Eleanor Wright Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America meetings, and hired students as interns at her agency. When I heard about her scholarship, I was pleased but not surprised. Brittni is genuine and committed.”
Brown hopes her efforts will allow more students to pursue education in the public relations industry. The scholarship accepts applicants annually. For more information about the scholarship, visit EMU’s Black Alumni Association website or email email@example.com.
About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 14,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and its graduate school. National publications regularly recognize EMU for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. Visit the University’s rankings and points of pride websites to learn more. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website. To stay up to date on University news, activities and announcements, visit EMU Today.