Weissman Student Jose Bayona Wins National Scholarship

Jose BayonaThe Donald W. Reynolds National Business Journalism Scholarship was awarded to Weissman undergraduate Jose Bayona on Feb. 25 for his excellence in business and Latin journalism. Nominated by Professor Andrea Gabor of the journalism department, Bayona was one of eight students to receive the national award.

The scholarship came as a surprise to Bayona who studies journalism and political science through the CUNY baccalaureate program.

"This scholarship is great because the money really helps — I have been living off of my savings and student loans," said the married father of a one-year-old son.

Bayona said that about two or three weeks ago, Gabor emailed him saying she had nominated him for the scholarship. Bayona was suprised that the applications were to be postmarked for the following Monday, forcing him to get all documents ready in two days. A few weeks later, Bayona got a phone call congratulating him on receiving the scholarship. "All I could say was ‘Wow,’" he recalled.

Bayona came to the U.S. in 1996 from Venezuela with a bachelor’s degree in theater. He went straight to NYU to receive a degree in film, where he realized he wanted a degree from an American school that could push him forward in the business and journalism world.

With recommendations from school advisors regarding the best public universities, he was advised to attend Baruch for the school’s quality education and reputation.

Before becoming a full-time student, Bayona worked for two years at the New York Daily News for the Spanish publication Hora Hispana. He left last year to pursue a bachelor’s degree.

"I recommended Jose for the scholarship because of the overall quality of the work he was doing in my journalistic writing class [and because of] his interest in understanding the economic and business ramifications of the financial crisis and how it impacts small businesses in New York City," said Gabor.

Bayona and Gabor were not only delighted to have received the scholarship but the Donald W. Reynolds National Center was pleased to grant him the award.

Story by Lillian Rizzo, for The Ticker
Edited by J D Sallen

"He represents journalism across several languages but the main reason was for his intelligence," said Andrew Leckey, president of the National Center for Business Journalism. "It is not just because he is a bilingual writer. He not only writes with accuracy and intelligence but with empathy."

The Reynolds Center is located at Arizona State University and gives many business journalism workshops nationally, including a few given at Baruch. This is the third year they have given out the scholarship.

"As an aspiring journalist, Jose realizes that the most important stories today require a willingness to explore business and economic issues," said Gabor.

Bayona will graduate next December and hopes to get a job with a reputable newspaper. Along with looking for work, he will apply to the Columbia and CUNY journalism graduate school programs.

"I am really grateful for Professor Gabor," said Bayona. "I never received anything outside of Baruch and this really helps me."

The City University of New York