WMU News

British Isles Scholarship goes to theatre education major

Dec. 6, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- For the first time since its inception, Western Michigan University's British Isles Scholarship is going to a theatre education student.

Tara Matkosky, a WMU junior from Clarkston, Mich., will use the scholarship to travel to London and Cork, Ireland, next summer as part of the New York University Study Abroad Program.

"That's a really prestigious program," says Rachel Briley, WMU director of theatre education and assistant professor of theatre. "This is a wonderful opportunity for her."

Matkosky is the 15th British Isles Scholar and the first theatre education major to win the prestigious scholarship award. Created in 1987 by then WMU President Diether Haenicke, it allows a student to study theatre in the British Isles, the theatre capital of the world. So far, there have been six who have studied acting, four in stage management, four in theatre design and technology, and now one in theatre education.

Matkosky, a student in the Lee Honors College, was awarded the scholarship based on an extensive portfolio she assembled. A key element of her portfolio was information about her role in the founding and direction of the Devising Team in the Department of Theatre. The team visited schools to prepare children to watch a production of the play "Wiley and the Hairy Man." After children watched the play, the team went back to facilitate theatre workshops around issues presented in the play, in particular fear.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 269 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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