Judy Pearson’s Gift Will Move Students Beyond the Classroom

October 12, 2022

The St. Cloud State University community gathered on September 22 to dedicate the new Judy C. Pearson Department of Communication Studies. The Minnesota university’s first named department honors Judy C. Pearson, a former NCA president, author, and St. Cloud alum, whose $1 million endowed gift will support students and faculty.

“If we can help students, I think it’s an obligation that we do that,” Pearson said during a campus celebration of her historic contribution. “It’s like being an older child in a family; you help the younger ones behind you.” 



R. Jeffrey Ringer, Ph.D., a professor in the department and an NCA member who has worked closely with Dr. Pearson on several publications and Communication projects, was equally excited about the potential for new opportunities. “Her gift to the department will make a difference in our students’ lives year after year after year,” he said. 

St. Cloud students are already seeing the benefits. Several students have been awarded scholarships to attend the NCA National Convention in New Orleans. 

For Dr. Pearson, that’s just the start of her plans to expand educational opportunities for students and faculty beyond the classroom. She joined Dr. Ringer as guest on a special episode of the NCA podcast, “Communication Matters,” to talk more about her vision for the future and its impact on St. Cloud students. Listen.

Photos courtesy of Colleen Harrison/St. Cloud State University.