Scholarship Honors Sociology Professor, Wife

The legacy of a sociology professor and his humanitarian wife will live on through a newly funded student scholarship in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology.

The Blaine T. and Jean W. Williams Endowed Scholarship in Sociology was recently established by their son, Blaine Williams, and his wife, Elaine Davenport. The first scholarship — awarded to sociology senior Amy Ford — was presented at the department’s Lambda Alpha and Alpha Kappa Delta’s Celebration of Achievement and Induction Ceremonies last week.

Blaine Williams Sr. is a former professor and founding chair of the sociology department at The University of Texas at Arlington. His wife, Jean Williams, worked for the United Way of Tarrant County from 1966-1987 and was director of the Volunteer Center of Fort Worth. She later helped found “First Call for Help,” which was later renamed “2-1-1 Texas.” She spearheaded the gathering of information about the community’s disparate social services into one central referral system — a system that now benefits an 11-county area of North Texas.

Ford is a newly inducted member of Phi Kappa Phi and belongs to the Golden Key International Honor Society. She has been active in on-campus and off-campus activities and volunteers with several organizations in the Grand Prairie community. She is on track to graduate with her bachelor’s of arts degree in sociology in 2012 and plans to pursue advanced degrees in sociology.

“Amy is delighted to receive this award,” said Dr. Shelley Smith, chair of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. “She is an excellent student who also contributes to university and community service.  She is precisely the sort of student this award is meant to help.”

Smith said donor support is key in enhancing educational opportunities for students in the department.

“In these tough economic times,” she said, “we greatly appreciate the support of Mr. Williams and Ms. Davenport in furthering the academic and professional success of our students.”

Blaine Williams is a consultant and Davenport is a writer. The couple lives in Dripping Springs, Texas.

The scholarship will be awarded annually to a junior or senior majoring in sociology at UT Arlington. For more information on the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, log on to http://www.uta.edu/sociology-anthropology/.

To donate to student scholarships, contact Myke Holt at (817) 272-1055.

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