Skip to Main Content

Student Journalist's Path Aided by Scholarships

Aleanna Siacon

Aleanna Siacon

Aleanna Siacon was just two weeks into her first year at Wayne State University when she glimpsed a clear view of her future.

The journalism and political science student was pursuing a story for the student newspaper about paintings the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) might lose. After feeling somewhat intimidated watching the other reporters work at a press conference, Aleanna raised her hand, identified herself as a reporter from The South End, and asked the new DIA director a question.

"This moment solidified my desire to become a journalist," Aleanna recalls.

Now a senior, Aleanna has remained ambitious, tallying internships with Detroit City Councilman James Tate's office and with Hour Detroit and Metro Parent magazines. She traveled to Ghana to cover the country's presidential election, and most recently spent the summer interning for the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester, New York.

She attributes the freedom to pursue these hands-on working opportunities to financial assistance from scholarships.

"I was incredibly lucky to have found myself at an institution that has not only supported me so heftily financially, but found me and my body of work worthy of such scholarships," Aleanna says.

Aleanna recalls how she chose Wayne State after learning about the Journalism Institute for Media Diversity (JIM), an initiative that trains high-achieving students for careers in media.

"I saw what my future could be like, and I was ready to fight for it," Aleanna says. "I was fighting for an experience, a chance to prove myself in a place that I was proud to become associated with."

You can help other deserving students with a planned gift through your will or estate. Contact the Office of Planned Giving at (313) 577-6481 or