Senior awarded PRSA Georgia’s ‘Multicultural PRism Scholarship’

Georgia’s chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) recently awarded Kaniya Bates ’22 with the 2021 Multicultural PRism Scholarship.

Kaniya Bates '22

Photo: Kaniya Bates ’22.  Bates is also pictured in the group photo above, second from the right, from the Feb. 28, 2020 PRSA Georgia conference at Coca-Cola headquarters in Atlanta.

The scholarship was established in 2019 to assist and recognize undergraduate and graduate students for their commitment to the practice of public relations.

Bates, a communication studies major and business administration minor, is currently the co-president of Oglethorpe’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA).

She was introduced to the scholarship by OU PRSSA Advisor Dr. Kate Keib, assistant professor of communication studies.

“Dr. Keib is great at relaying information and opportunities to us because she’s such an advocate for the students,” Bates said. “If it weren’t for her, I definitely wouldn’t have gotten this scholarship….She’s approachable and really goes the extra mile.”

Along with written statements and letters of recommendation, Bates’ scholarship application required a video submission responding to the prompt: What do you believe are the most effective ways communicators can reach your generation, build brand loyalty and trust? Why might this be important for organizations to consider?

In her response, the senior reflected on the increase in global activism in 2020. Using her own real-world experiences, Bates suggested ways that PR professionals could interest a younger audience in activities and organizations outside of their own personal communities.

In addition to her three years in PRSSA, Bates has held many other leadership positions on campus, including peer academic leader, resident assistant, Alpha Phi Omega Inter-Club Council (ICC) liaison, lead student worker in OU’s Campus StoreCollegiate 100 member, and Black Student Caucus social media coordinator.

Bates also recently completed an internship at Atlanta’s Hartsfield Jackson International Airport with their community affairs team.

“It was a great experience where I learned so much about event planning, coordination with other departments, and even some new things about different computer systems,” she reflected. “I had a great time, and I learned so much.”

If you are interested in joining Oglethorpe’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America, please email advisor Dr. Kate Keib at

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