History of the Buckley Scholarship Fund

Frank Buckley

Frank Buckley

First awards given in 1979, Warms recognizes 2-year studentsIn October 1978, the Texas Intercollegiate Press Advisers Association established the Frank W. Buckley Scholarships at the Fall Business Meeting in San Antonio. Wilma Wirt, TIPAA president and chair of the mass communications department at the University of Texas-El Paso, appointed a committee composed of students and advisers to draw up the criteria. The association voted to name the scholarships to honor Dr. Frank W. Buckley of Southwest Texas State University, who had served TIPA and TIPAA as the first executive director and whose financial management had resulted in the fund from which the scholarships would come.

The Central Office was established in 1969 in an effort to stabilize and coordinate the activities of the association. Dr. Buckley volunteered SWTSU to serve as the host school for the office. In addition to his duties as chair of the SWTSU journalism department, director of the university’s news and information services and adviser to the student newspaper – The University Star, Dr. Buckley accepted the role of /TIPAA executive director.

The committee appointed by Wirt elected to give two scholarships – one for a senior college student and one for a community college student. The amount was set at $400 each, with half the stipend being given during the fall and half during the spring.

The first two scholarships were awarded in April 1979 at the annual convention hosted by UT-El Paso. Patricia Hammond of SWTSU and Rocky Alexander of Western Texas College were the first recipients.

At the Spring 1992 convention hosted by the University of Texas-Arlington, the TIPAA voted unanimously to change the name of the Frank W. Buckley Scholarships to the Frank W. Buckley Scholarship Fund.

In addition, at that same meeting, the members voted unanimously to name the community college scholarship in honor of Mike Warms, publications adviser at Trinity Valley Community College who died Dec. 24, 1991. The award is now known as the Mike Warms Memorial Community College Scholarship.