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Submitted by Lynn Gottler
The Queen City Jass Society (QCJS) announced the “Professor” Don Burns Memorial Scholarship has been awarded to Ian Cioppa, a 2021 graduate of Grand Island High School.
This $1,500 scholarship was made possible through the generosity of Don’s family and friends. Burns, a lifelong resident and heart of Grand Island, spent his life entertaining with his musical abilities, quick wit, and the generous acceptance of all. It is in his spirit of acceptance and appreciation for music that the scholarship fund was started.
Ian is planning on continuing his education at the State University of New York at Fredonia, where he will major in computer information systems and minor in music. Having played the trumpet since fourth grade, singing in choirs, and acting in various plays throughout his school career, Ian is already an entertainer, following in the “professor’s” footsteps.
To quote Ian’s application, “Music will always hold a special place in my heart. It is helped me learn and grow as a person, and it’s also giving me something to love and enjoy doing no matter what’s going on in my life.”
It is hoped that QCJS will be able to offer future scholarships to other high school graduates looking to continue their musical education.
Burns was the president of Queen City Jass Society, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation, appreciation and promotion of traditional ragtime and Dixieland jazz music.
Monthly “meetings” are held featuring Dixieland jazz bands both local and out of town, as well as Canadian bands. New members are always welcome. Inquiries can be sent to Queen City Jass Society, P.O. Box 882, Grand Island, NY 14072.