Theater design/technology junior Jayson D. Clark of North Tonawanda was selected by the faculty of Niagara University's department of theater and fine arts as the recipient of the Julie Burdick Memorial Scholarship for academic year 2011-12. The scholarship is named after NU alumna Julie Burdick, '03. Prior recipients have included Preston Cuer, '09, Jessica Bill, '10, and Casey Lynn Moyer, '11.
Burdick passed away unexpectedly on Jan. 27, 2007, and her parents, Dr. James Burdick and Sharon Burdick of East Amherst, established the scholarship as a result of thousands of dollars of contributions made to Niagara University Theatre in honor of their daughter. The Burdick family has requested that one sophomore, junior or senior who is an outstanding theater studies major be chosen by the administrators and faculty of the theater program to receive the scholarship, which will last for the duration of the student's undergraduate years at Niagara University. Once the student has graduated from NU, new recipients for the scholarship will be selected and announced.
Any student selected for this honor must not only excel on stage and in the classroom, but also they must model a Vincentian-like interest in caring for and helping others.
Gregory Fletcher, director of Niagara University Theatre, said, "Jay Clark is a triple threat - he's a talented designer, an honor student and, as a human being, he's a tremendous morale builder and role model for his fellow students and the entire department."
Maureen Stevens, associate professor of design/technology, added, "Jay Clark is very positive and a wonderful representative of the design/technology major in the theater program at Niagara University."
Fred Heuer, assistant vice president for marketing at NU, said, "As advisor for the university's Live Music series for more than a decade, I have had the pleasure of working with a number of design/technology theater majors who volunteer their time and expertise. Jay Clark stands out as an immensely talented, kind and giving individual who shares his technical knowledge with the younger students so that they can take over the sound and lighting when he graduates. The way he handles our concerts' lighting and sound and works with his peers and our entertainers is outstanding."
During the summer of his sophomore year, Clark interned as a lighting and sound technician for "A More Perfect Union" off-Broadway. He has worked as a sound technician for the bands Cute Is What We Aim For, We the Kings, Ethnic Heritage Ensemble and Grammy winner Walt Whitman Jr. Clark is also a traveling sound technician for the band Stone Row.