The meeting eventually led to marriage, and now the couple has given the University the ability to sponsor a paid internship for students interested in theater. After his wife died several years ago, George Wallace, a member of the Class of 1939, decided to honor her by starting an endowment in her name. The result was the Jane Wallace Memorial Internship Program, created last year, which will annually give a student in an unpaid theater internship program the money he or she would make in a regular summer job. Student Performing Arts Coordinator Kathryn Helene, who helped design the program, said that while there are many internships available in professional theater companies, they are usually non-paying. "The economic realities are such that students have to work in the summer," she said. "This is trying to fill that gap." The internship's purpose, according to Helene, is to introduce students to the realities of professional theater so they can evaluate their own careers and also share the information with other students. "They have to ask themselves, do they want a theater career, what's involved, how glamorous is it," she said. "These are the kind of details none of us can really say to another student." College senior David Simon was the first recipient of the award, given last year. He worked for 12 weeks with the Acting Company, a New York City professional repertoire company. "[The internship] allowed me to get into some of the other areas [of theater] that I'm interested in, [including] the backstage side of it," Simon said. "It let me see what I like and what I don't like. If you're interested in working in theater, definitely apply." Applicants must write a five- to 10-page essay describing their previous involvement in theater and their professional aspirations. Wallace and his daughter Susan, along with Helene, several students and a professor, reviewed the applications last year. Helene said the committee chose Simon based on his clearly defined professional goals. He is also well known in the University arts community and will be able to spread information about the program. Helene added that she has helped other students find internships, even though the University was not able to pay for them, and said that she is hoping to expand the endowment to five internships.Comments powered by Disqus
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