The Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences (AIAS) established a new academic scholarship in honor of Mark Beaumont, who served as a board member and COO of Capcom North America and Europe before passing away suddenly on February 23, 2010 after suffering a heart attack.

The AIAS will award four $2,500 scholarships every year to students pursuing careers in interactive entertainment and attending accredited universities. The non-profit's scholarship committee will include Electronic Arts's Rich Hilleman, Interactive Entertainment's Don Daglow, Epic Games's Mike Capps, USC's Chris Swain, and Carnegie Melon's Jesse Schell.

Beaumont's laudable 28-year-history in the video game industry began at Atari in 1982, followed by management and executive roles at notable publishers such as Psygnosis, Mindscape, Data East, Activision, and Midway Games. He worked at Capcom for nearly five years, first as SVP and EVP before his promotion in April 2008 to chief operating officer.

"Never one to seek the spotlight, Mark Beaumont has been a patient and invaluable mentor to me and the hundreds of other people he has touched over the course of nearly three decades in the industry," says Christian Svensson, an AIAS board member and corporate officer/vice president of strategic planning & business development at Capcom Entertainment.

Svensson adds, "When you look at all of the games and brands he’s touched and people whose respect he has earned, I can think of no one that is more deserving of this honor than Mark."

You can make donations to the Mark Beaumont Scholarship Fund by sending checks to the AIAS Foundation/Mark Beaumont Fund 23622 Calabasas Road, Suite 220 Calabasas, CA 9130.