EdTA’s vision is for every student to have access to theatre taught by qualified educators as a vital part of a well-rounded education. An essential way for EdTA to achieve that vision is through its flagship International Thespian Society (ITS), the theatre honor society for middle and high school students.
Upon induction into ITS, Thespians (high schoolers) and Junior Thespians (middle grade students) become lifetime members of a society that includes such notable alumni as comedian Wayne Brady, singers Janelle Monae and Kelly Clarkson, actor Tom Hanks, and U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland.
ITS has been honoring student achievement in theatre since 1929: through the Depression, the Cold War, and now through the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite school shutdowns and quarantines, 25,000+ students were inducted into ITS in 2020 — raising the all-time total number of Thespians to more than 2.4 million.
“Being part of a troupe has given me the tools to become who I am today, and I think it does that for a lot of students in our organization.”
Isabelle Snyder, chair of the 2020-21 class of International Thespian Officers, EdTA’s student leadership program. Snyder belongs to Troupe 5029 in State College, Pennsylvania.
EdTA’s 46 chapters (in 44 U.S. states plus China and British Columbia, Canada) are another important platform for delivering the association’s mission and vision. Chapters hosted 47 events impacting more than 47,000 students in 2020.