Scholarship Office Welcomes New Advisor

Shamra Clark joined The Ford Family Foundation Scholarship Office in Eugene when she began as scholarship advisor on July 7, following Barb Griesel’s retirement at the end of May.

“She’s an advocate for Scholars,” Director of Scholarship Programs Sam Rennick explained. “She helps students make smooth transitions to college, addresses academic concerns, and provides overall guidance and support.”

Alumni in transition may benefit from a visit with Clark. She can advise alumni on graduate school options and provide career guidance. “Shamra has jumped in with both feet, from connecting with Scholars and families at the summer conferences to making presentations at various scholarship events,” Rennick said.

Clark earned a bachelor’s degree in English with an emphasis on secondary education from the University of Detroit Mercy in May 2003. She earned her master’s degree in community counseling at Oakland University in Michigan in May 2008.

Clark worked as assistant director of admissions at Marygrove College in Michigan before moving to Oregon two years ago to take a job as a financial aid counselor in the University of Oregon Financial Aid Office. She worked with low-income, high-achieving students at the UO.

Now, Clark is part of the Ford Family.

“It’s the perfect job for me,” she said. “I really wanted to reach out to the ones who needed a helping hand.”

Rennick said that Clark’s counseling background and financial aid expertise make her the perfect fit for her scholarship advisor role.

Although her family is elsewhere, she says her work “family” keeps growing. Clark, who is 30, sings with the Eugene Opera and occasionally acts in plays and training videos.

But the best thing about moving to Oregon, Clark says: “I love that I relearned to ride my bike. I was 12 years old when I last rode a bike!” She often rides to work, and she enjoys trying organic and vegetarian foods. “I just feel healthier all around.”