Friday, August 25, 2006

New Clarence Hodson Prize Supports Independent Student Research, Study, or Internships Anywhere in the World

Deadline for WC Student Applications: October 2, 2006

Chestertown, MD, August 24, 2006 — Washington College has announced the creation of a new student prize that rewards creativity, initiative, and intellectual curiosity with a competitive grant to support an internship, undergraduate research project, or other form of study anywhere in the world. The Clarence Hodson Prize—established through a bequest from the late Margaret Hodson Black and named after the founder of the Beneficial Corporation—will be offered to a sophomore, junior, or senior majoring in the fine and performing arts, with a preference to a student majoring in music, who has achieved distinction among Washington College's top scholars. The inaugural prize, with an estimated value of $2,500 (but varying year to year), will be awarded in Fall 2006.

To receive consideration, students must have a GPA of 3.4 or better and submit a well-crafted proposal to Professor Garry Clarke, Chair of the Prize Committee, by Monday, October 2, 2006. Proposals must be submitted in hardcopy to the Chair on the approved form. The award will be made by November 1. As a condition of the award, recipients must submit a written report to the Chair within 30 days of the conclusion of their learning experience, but in any event before their graduation from Washington College. A public presentation of the report is highly desirable and should be scheduled following submission.

The Clarence Hodson Prize was created through the generosity of the late Margaret Hodson Black, second cousin to Colonel Clarence Hodson. The first music major at the Women's College of Delaware, Miss Black enjoyed playing and teaching music throughout her life. From 1923 to 1926, she was the first high school music teacher in Easton, Maryland, and from 1926 to 1929 taught music at Frederick High School and methods of music teaching at Hood College. From 1929 to 1930, she served as director of music at Salisbury State Normal School in Salisbury, Maryland. She was the first music supervisor for Cecil County from 1930 to 1932, taught part-time at the Teacher's College in Salisbury from 1932 to 1933, and became director of music at Salisbury State College from 1933 to 1943.

After serving as a member of the Army Special Services from 1943 to 1946, Miss Black entered a new phase in her career, earning a master's degree in psychology from the University of Delaware in 1949 and working for two decades as a licensed psychologist in Maryland and Delaware.

Miss Black continued with her music during her active retirement, teaching piano and organ for another three decades and frequently traveling to music festivals in Austria, Wales, and France. Living in her childhood home on West Main Street in Cecilton, Maryland, she practiced daily on the grand piano and delighted friends with preludes and sonatas well into her 90s. In 1992, she was made professor emeritus at Salisbury State University and in 1997 was awarded a place in the Music Hall of Fame of the University of Maryland, College Park.

Colonel Clarence Hodson (1868-1928), founder of the Beneficial Corporation, was born in Laurel, Delaware, and began his career in banking on Maryland's Eastern Shore. Throughout his 40-year business career, Colonel Hodson was director for more than 40 banks, trust and mortgage companies, insurance companies, and public utilities. In 1913, he founded the Beneficial Loan Society, which later became the Beneficial Corporation. After his death, his staunch support of higher education was carried on by The Hodson Trust, a charitable foundation which funds academic merit scholarships, research grants, technology improvements, facilities, library expansion, athletic programs, faculty salaries, and endowment funds at Johns Hopkins University, Hood, St. John's, and Washington colleges.

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