Professional Studies and Fine Arts

Professional Studies and Fine Arts

Scholarship fund created in memory of Chad Shelton

Scholarship fund created in memory of Chad Shelton

By Teresa Monaco

San Diego State University’s School of Theatre, Television, and Film is renowned for its Master of Fine Arts in Design and Technical Theatre program. When recent Lighting Design graduate Chad Shelton died suddenly last year, the school and community sought to raise money for a scholarship in his name. The Chad Shelton Memorial Theatre Design and Technology Scholarship has been created, and Caroline Andrew has been named as its first recipient.

“Chad Shelton was my best friend in the lighting department at State,” says Andrew. “He was a mentor and someone I admired greatly… We were inseparable my first year/his last year at SDSU, on and off campus, and I miss him so very much.”

Andrew has a couple of things in mind for how she will use the scholarship to benefit her projects and studies. “Knowing it’s there has made me feel better about a project (custom-painted glass gobos) for the production of Enchanted April that I’ve been working on,” Andrew says. “I’ve put a lot of time, care, and creativity into the Enchanted April lighting plot, and I love being able to explore more creative, hands-on options in the world of lighting.”

After graduating in Spring 2018, Andrew plans to look for work in New York. “The scholarship is really going to benefit me when I’m traveling for interviews, internships, and portfolio reviews. It will take a weight off my shoulders to have extra financial support to help with travel expenses,” she said.

“If there’s anything I would want the world to know about Chad, it is that he was literally the best kind of human,” says Andrew. “You could rely on him through thick and thin, he would pick you up when you were down, he’d be there no matter what… I can only hope someday I will be as amazing a human as he was, and I strive to be someone he would be proud of. He has inspired me, and countless others, to be better—to be the best. I hope I can live up to the challenge.”

According to Anne McMills, Head of Lighting Design at SDSU, the scholarship fund is “one small way to make this amazing student’s name live on. Chad was an incredible man, lighting designer, and colleague… Chad would have been a force in our community—his talent and good heart warranted a very bright future.”

Funding for the Chad Shelton Memorial Theatre Design and Technology Scholarship is provided by family and friends of Chad Shelton, SDSU faculty and alumni, the Theatre Department General Fund, and the Joyce Gattas Dean’s Fund for Excellence. The fund is still accepting donations. To donate, please visit this link and add “Chad Shelton Memorial Scholarship” in the “Other Designation” field to help continue Chad’s legacy at SDSU.

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