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A Guide to Thea's Statewide Impact for the 2018-19 School Year


Thea Foundation’s three implemented programs reached new levels of success during the 2018-19 school year. Since 2002, Thea Foundation has awarded 399 scholarships, totaling almost $2.3 million in scholarships. Beyond awarding 36 scholarships this year, up from 30 scholarships given in 2018 through Thea’s annual scholarship program, Thea’s Art Closet, an online funding effort in partnership with DonorsChoose for Arkansas teachers to submit art supplies requests to, awarded $54,835 in art supplies and creative materials for schools, reaching 27,063 students across the state. After matching funds, the total amount awarded was $118,919.

“Our goal to further Arkansas students’ exposure to the arts has been ongoing for the past 18 years, and we are excited to achieve reaching our highest number of students through our Art Closet program this year,” said Paul Leopoulos, Executive Director of Thea Foundation. “Funding 145 unique projects, several being cross-curricular in nature, at 88 different schools across the state is truly a milestone in Thea’s efforts.”

Additionally, Thea’s Arts Reconstruction program will nearly double its annual number of Arkansas teachers provided with professional development this June at UA-Little Rock’s Windgate Center of Art + Design. Training in new visual arts mediums will be given to Arkansas arts educators to then be implemented in classrooms beginning next school year.

Thea’s annual scholarships remain a unique opportunity for Arkansas seniors (available to homeschooled students as well) as test scores, GPA, nor intent to major in the arts is considered during the competition process. There are six different competitions to enter: visual arts, performing arts, slam poetry, creative writing, fashion design, and film — now in partnership with the Arkansas Cinema Society. Many students will benefit from Thea’s education partners, including almost every 4-year college and many 2-year colleges in Arkansas, where their scholarship could be matched with thousands more dollars in scholarship money.

Although Thea Foundation does not anticipate every student to explore furthering their education specifically in the arts, the 2019 winners do include students that will attend prominent art schools this fall, including The Savannah College of Art and Design as well as The University of the Arts in Philadelphia.

Below is the complete list of this year’s 36 scholarship-winning students from across the state. A strong majority of Thea’s scholarships are endowed. ​For those that are, the name(s) or organization attributed with the endowment are in bold above the scholarships.

Visual Arts Winners

Thea Foundation Board Scholarship

Esther Crisler - 1st place, $4,000

Northwest Arkansas Classical Academy

Windgate Foundation Scholarship

Amber Alvizo - 2nd place, $3,500

Clarksville High School

Robyn Horn, Dede & Karen Hutcheson Scholarship

Kerryan Ptacek - 3rd place, $3,000

Bentonville West High School

Madison Brewer - 4th place, $2,500

Van Buren High School

Robin Orsi Family Scholarship

Lillian Greer - 5th place, $2,000

Little Rock Christian Academy

Olds Foundation Scholarship

Tiffany Hobson - 6th place, $2,000

Oden High School

Janet & Glenn Davis Scholarship

Paetyn Monroe - 7th place, $2,000

Van Buren High School

Munro Foundation Scholarship

Addison Harper - 8th place, $2,000

Sylvan Hills High School

Murphy USA Scholarship

Lucy Gatewood - 9th place, $2,000

Episcopal Collegiate School

Rita Curtis Memorial Scholarship

Margaret Maddison - 10th place, $2,000

Little Rock Christian Academy

Performing Arts Winners

Clinton Family Foundation Scholarship

Karlee Woody - 1st Place, $4,000

North Little Rock High School

Linda & Paul Leopoulos Scholarship

Rudy Fajardo - 2nd place, $3,500

Parkview Arts and Science Magnet High School

Hammonds/McDonald Scholarship

Lena Martin - 3rd place, $3,000

Arkansas Arts Academy

Charles A. Frueauff Scholarship

Briya Alford - 4th place, $2,500

Conway High School

Lawrence Hamilton Memorial Scholarship

Sophia Young - 5th place, $2,000

Little Rock Central High School

Lindsey Robison East Memorial Scholarship

Asher Patten - 6th place, $2,000

Harding Academy

Charles Louis Cabe Jr. Memorial Scholarship

Rainey Ross - 7th place, $2,000

Cabot High School

Heflin Family Foundation Scholarship

Cooper Sikes - 8th place, $2,000

Parkview Arts and Science Magnet High School

Wesley K. Clark, II Scholarship

Lauren Flohr - 9th place, $2,000

Bentonville High School

Robert T. & Elizabeth W. Seibert Scholarship

Marilyn Ronnel - 10th place, $2,000

Little Rock Central High School

Slam Poetry Winners

Jamee McAdoo - 1st place, $4,000

Little Rock Central High School

Jasmine Willis - 2nd place, $3,500

Alma High School

Harmon Tobler - 3rd place, $3,000

Parkview High School

McKinzie Batson - 4th place, $2,500

Parkview High School

Zainab Shah - 5th place, $2,000

Little Rock Central High School


Creative Writing Winners

Elizabeth Wilkinson Scholarship

Verity Miller - 1st place, $4,000

Conway High School

Dr. Ben Meade & Jane Hunt Scholarship

Harrison Roberts - 2nd place, $3,500

Little Rock Christian Academy

Dena Reynolds Memorial Scholarship

Kylie Wilkins - 3rd place, $3,000

Bentonville High School

Savanna Watts - 4th place, $2,500

Perryville High School

Trevor Speight - 5th place, $2,000

Mena High School

Fashion Design Winners

Jeanne McNeill Johansson Scholarship

Jennifer Mendoza - 1st place, $4,000

Hall High School

John Bailey Scholarship

Allison Stickler - 2nd place, $3,500

Harrisburg High School

Film Winners

Dorothy and Walter Morris Foundation Scholarship

Andrew Verkler - Screenwriting, $2,500

Greenbrier High School

Kye-Yak International Scholarship

Brett Helms - Directing, $2,500

Fayetteville High School

Natalie and Win Rockefeller Scholarship

John Arellano - Cinematography, $2,500

Har-Ber High School

Jasmin Gonzales - Editing, $2,500

Lakeside High School

In August, Thea Foundation’s available funding through Art Closet will open for submission again to help with projects during the 2019-20 school year, and the details for next year’s scholarship competitions, taking place in March 2020, will be shared as well.

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