SMPA and Finn Partners-Widmeyer Communications Launch Scholars Program

The program will support graduate students with tuition assistance, internship experience.

Scott Widmeyer, Laura Shuey-Kostelac and Frank Sesno.
Scott Widmeyer, Laura Shuey-Kostelac and Frank Sesno.
January 07, 2015

In partnership with Widmeyer Communications and its parent company Finn Partners, the George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs has launched the Finn-Partners-Widmeyer Communications Scholar program for graduate students pursuing public affairs careers. The program will include tuition support and a paid internship with the Finn Partners-Widmeyer Communications Firm.

Scott Widmeyer, the founder and managing partner of Widmeyer Communications, facilitated the scholarship. He serves on the National Council for Media and Public Affairs, which functions as the SMPA advisory board.

The inaugural Finn-Partners-Widmeyer Communications Scholar is Laura Shuey-Kostelac, a fifth-year student in SMPA’s combined B.A./M.A. program in media and public affairs. Ms. Shuey-Kostelac has a strong background in communications. She has worked as a volunteer at the International Conference of Women Media Leaders, completed a study abroad program in Paris to discuss the digital age with journalists and media professionals and interned with the Department of Justice.

“We are creating a win-win for deserving students like Laura in helping defray tuition costs and at the same time bringing her into our professional working environment in Washington where she partners with colleagues in our growing public affairs groups,” Mr. Widmeyer and Peter Finn, CEO of Finn Partners, said in a joint statement.

SMPA Director Frank Sesno explained that he hopes to expand the Finn-Partners-Widmeyer Communications Scholar program in the coming years and give more aspiring public affairs professionals hands-on opportunities through the Finn Partners-Widmeyer Communications Firm.

“The level of support that Widmeyer/Finn puts into this is a game-changer for our students because it not only helps them with tuition, but it also is providing a real foundation for professional career building and on-the-job, real-world experiences,” he said.

Ms. Shuey-Kostelac already has started her position with the Finn Partners-Widmeyer Communications Firm. She is gaining experience working with the firm’s account leads and developing communication campaigns for clients like Hyundai, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and Up to Us.

“What I am doing and learning at Widmeyer/Finn this year will contribute greatly to my future and my career,” she said.