MTSU partners with the ‘Nashville Scene’ to create scholarship honoring late Jim Ridley

Photo courtesy of the Nashville Scene

Story by Robin Duff / Contributing Writer 

MTSU and the Nashville Scene are joining forces to raise funds to start a scholarship in honor of the late Jim Ridley, editor of the Scene and an MTSU alumnus.

Murfreesboro native Jim Ridley graduated from MTSU in 1989 with degrees in Journalism and English. He began working for the Nashville Scene that same year and was named editor of the Scene in 2009. He was inducted into the MTSU College of Media and Entertainment’s Wall of Fame in 2015.

“Jim was really unique. He cared about his writers, and he cared about his community,” says Abby White, the Development Director of the College of Media and Entertainment and contributing editor of the Nashville Scene.

Ridley died in April 2016 after suffering a cardiac event. After his death, the MTSU development office began working to establish the Jim Ridley Memorial Scholarship.

“We knew we had to do something at MTSU to recognize him,” White said. “He exemplifies what every journalism student aspires to be.”

The scholarship will be awarded to a journalism student with 60 credit hours and a minimum GPA of 3.0. Applicants will be asked to submit a short essay to demonstrate their writing skills.

“We want to recognize students that have a genuine talent, and we want to nurture that talent,” White explains.  

The college needs to raise $25,000 to create the scholarship and has received around $15,000 in donations so far. Donations can be made online here

For information on the Jim Ridley Memorial Scholarship, contact Abby White at (615) 898-5756 or

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To contact News Editor Brinley Hineman, email

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