2022-23 Statewide Impact
Since 2001, Thea Foundation’s statewide impact has grown each year to better serve Arkansas and further our continued mission to advocate the importance of Arts for the development of our youth. In 2022-23, Thea’s three areas of programming changed lives across the state, including providing the much-needed support for Arkansas public school teachers as well as awarding annual scholarships to a new graduating class of high school seniors.
Thea’s annual scholarships remain a key resource for helping young people across the state receive financial help for higher education. Each of the five art-based competitions provide Arkansas seniors with an opportunity to find money for college based on their talent alone. Our first scholarship was awarded in 2002, and we’ve awarded more than $2.8 million in scholarships to Arkansas students since then. In 2023, we awarded $216,000 worth of scholarships to 36 seniors across Arkansas.
Although Thea Foundation does not anticipate every student to explore furthering their education specifically in the arts, the 2023 winners do include students now attending prominent art schools, including The Savannah College of Art and Design as well as NYU Tisch School of the Arts.
Visit our blog for the complete list of 36 scholarship-winning students from across the state who received our support to pursue higher education beginning in fall 2023.
A strong majority of Thea’s scholarships are endowed. For those that are, the name(s) or organization attributed with the endowment are listed above the scholarships.
Thea's Art Closet
Thea’s Art Closet, an online funding effort in partnership with DonorsChoose for Arkansas teachers to submit art supplies requests to, awarded $200,000 in art supplies and creative materials for schools, impacting and supporting 218 public school teachers across the state. After matching funds, the total amount awarded was $400,000. To date, Thea’s Art Closet has given more than $1.9 million in art supplies to hundreds of underfunded schools across the state, making the arts accessible for students in high-poverty areas and classrooms with little-to-no budget for art supplies and other creative materials.
Below is a distribution map of Thea’s Art Closet projects funded across the state during the 2018-19 school year.
During the 2019-20 school year, Thea Foundation will fund $100k in support before matching funds—providing teachers with the opportunity to now submit four projects per school year, up from two. Thea Foundation continues to explore new marketing tactics for areas of the state unaware of our available resources.
Thea's Arts Reconstruction
Beginning in 2014, Thea Foundation initiated partnerships with cultural institutions and arts organizations to amplify existing arts programming in schools. Currently, Arts Reconstruction is our focused effort to help teachers receive professional development and supplies to enable a better platform to advance in their own careers and schools. By providing training in new visual arts mediums, Thea Foundation helps enhance lesson planning and subsequently, gives students further exposure to ways in which they can create. In conjunction with the professional development, Thea also provides all necessary supplies to execute the new medium in each participating teacher's classroom.
In July 2023, Thea Foundation, hosted a dozen Arkansas public high school teachers for a week-long training for printmaking and low relief sculpture. The individual impact of our professional development provided can be viewed in our Q&A series with participating teachers on our blog.