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After the opening of the Lourdes University Drama Society’s 2012-2013 season, society advisor Keith Ramsdell announced the establishment of the Roemer Insurance – Janice L. Ramsdell Endowed Scholarship for Theatre.
Drama Society members Megan Carter, a senior majoring in Criminal Justice, and Tim Robinson, a junior majoring in Early Childhood Education, were named the first recipients of the scholarship. Each will receive $250 for spring semester.
The announcement came after the Drama Society had its first performance, David Auburn’s play Proof, on Friday night.
The scholarship is the result of a friendship that has developed between Ramsdell, director of Graduate Admissions and Drama Society advisor, and Wellington (Rocky) Roemer III, president and chief executive of Roemer Insurance.
“Last spring, I was seriously injured in an accident, and Keith came to my aid,” said Roemer.
Following that initial encounter, their paths crossed several times before Ramsdell shared his passion for theatre and the Drama Society with Roemer, who decided to fund the endowment along with his uncle, Tom Roemer. Since then, the endowment has grown to more than $11,000, with contributions from several donors.
Named for Ramsdell’s late mother, the idea for the scholarship came from his desire to honor her memory. “When Rocky and I first discussed the Drama Society’s goal of establishing a theatre scholarship, I mentioned that my wife and I had initially seeded the fund after my mom passed away a couple years ago,” the Drama Society advisor said.
“She always supported my efforts in the theatre. Much to my surprise, [Roemer] offered to name the scholarship after her.”
The scholarship also carries the name of Roemer Insurance, the family business started by Roemer’s grandfather in 1934.
To be eligible for the scholarship, students can major in any discipline but they must be actively involved in the Drama Society and be members of Alpha Psi Omega, the national theatre honor society.
Candidates must have a minimum of 75 points, earned through their involvement in the various shows produced by the Drama Society, plus they must have a minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA.