The Educational Theatre Association's 2023 scholarships awarded a grand total of $50,250 to theatre students in Arizona, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, North Carolina, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Virginia.
Among this year's recipients were Ruby Dias of Hicksville High School in Hicksville, New York, taking the $1,250 Mark Drum Scholarship, awarded to AAPI theatre students; Marlie Howie of A.L. Brown High School in Kannapolis, North Carolina, recipient of the $1,000 Dr. Kenny D. Hasija Scholarship for BIPOC theatre students; Jessica Carson of Avon Middle-High School in Avon, Massachusetts, receiving the $1,000 Christopher L. Hunt Scholarship for students looking to study theatre marketing; and Reed Castrejon of Rome High School in Rome, Georgia, taking the $1,500 Michael Peitz Leadership Scholarship for students who demonstrate outstanding leadership.
Both the $1,000 Gai Laing Jones Theatre Educator Scholarship and $1,500 Future Theatre Educator Scholarship are awarded to students pursuing careers in theatre education, with Mia Rios of Foster High School in Richmond, Texas, and, for the second year in a row, Mitchell Pace of Oregon City Senior High School in Oregon City, Oregon, recipients of this year's Jones scholarship and David Stephens of Roosevelt High School in Portland, Oregon, receiving the Future Educator Scholarship.
The EdTA President's Leadership Scholarship, which awards $1,000 to thespians who successfully demonstrate leadership abilities, went to Katrina Holland of Grand Prairie Fine Arts Academy in Grand Prairie, Texas, and the EdTA Board of Directors Scholarship, awarding $1,000 in honor of past and current EdTA board directors, went to Chloe McNeese of Keller High School in Keller, Texas.
This year's recipients join students awarded with additional scholarships at this year's International Thespian Festival, which included five $6,000 Grace Kelly scholarships along with internship stipends and professional mentorship awarded to graduating seniors Zehra Hassan of Rock Ridge Performing Arts in Ashburn, Virginia; Zari McIntosh of Durham School of the Arts in Durham, North Carolina; Jada Sifford of A.L. Brown High School in Kannapolis, North Carolina; Zalah Vallien of Alexandria Senior High School in Alexandria, Louisiana; and Isis Washington of Falls Lake Academy in Creedmoor, North Carolina, and five $1,000 training scholarships awarded to Gavin Evanson of Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson, Arizona; Carter Pask of Bedford Junior High School in Bedford, Texas; Joey Roth of Episcopal High School in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Kayden Shelmire of Alexandria Senior High School in Alexandria, Louisiana; and Casey Swanson of Mt. Carmel Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana. Savannah Fouchi of Mt. Carmel Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana, was also awarded the $2,500 Amy Bennett Musical Theatre Scholarship at the Festival.
A $2,000 award for a high-scoring Thespy participant was newly given this year thanks to a new endowment through the Educational Theatre Foundation, with the Marion Combs Career Inspiration Award going to Nina Porras of Alexandria Senior High School in Alexandria, Louisiana.
“Congratulations to all the talented and remarkable Thespians recognized this year,” said ETF President and EdTA Executive Director Dr. Jennifer Katona. “Through their accomplishments, we are reminded of the transformative power of theatre education and its potential to create a more vibrant and inclusive community. Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to the donors and supporters whose generosity has made these opportunities possible, including the Princess Grace Foundation, the Amy Bennett Foundation, and the family of our late friend, Marion Combs. Their dedication has helped to inspire the next generation of theatremakers, educators, and leaders as they pursue their dreams."
For more on the Educational Theatre Association and International Thespian Society, visit SchoolTheatre.org.