What’s an STO?
STO stands for State Thespian Officer.
The State Thespian Officers is made up of a small group of elected and appointed students (7-9) from around the state. They are elected in the spring at a State or Regional Planning Meeting. Positions include:
STO Chair - A Senior who was formerly the STO Vice Chair. They lead the STO Board.
STO Vice Chair- A Junior elected to a 2 year term. Their second year they will serve as the STO Chair. They shadow and assist the Chair.
STO Director Rep- When deemed necessary the Chapter Director will appoint a student to represent them on the STO Board and act as their liaison.
Technology STO - When deemed necessary a student with strong skills in Technical Theatre will be appointed to assist the Conference Technical Director.
STO At-Large - 5 STO are elected to best represent the various regions of the state and to help facilitate the conference and advocacy events.
STOs are expected to show strong leadership skills and make a positive impact toward Virginia Thespians’ State Conference and Advocacy Efforts. They will represent the students of VA Thespians and help make decisions on Conference including the themes, T-Shirts, Opening Numbers, Student Activities, Delegation of Student Responsibilities, and other major decisions. In addition students will work with RTOs on other VA Thespian initiatives, events, and meetings throughout the year to include Arts Advocacy Day at the Capitol, National Arts Advocacy Day, ITF Leadership Workshops, etc.
What’s an RTO?
RTO stands for Regional Thespian Officer.
Similarly to STOs, RTOs are made up of 1-2 students selected from the four designated Regions of VA: Southeast, Southwest, Central, and Northern. They are selected in the spring at a State or Regional Planning Meeting. In order to run be selected for an RTO position students must meet the same criteria as an STO.
RTO members have the same expectations as STOs but differ in that their focus is on outreach and promotion of ITS in their region whereas STOs focus on State Conference and Advocacy. RTOs must serve on the Student State Board and have strong communication skills in order to remain in contact with the other RTOs. Primarily they communicate Thespian Activities in their area, visit schools to offer workshops or guidance, and set achievable goals for their region in line with the vision of VA Thespians.
What is the State Student Board?
A collection of students that meet periodically to work on building leadership skills and exchange ideas with other students from around the state to help build and improve theatre at their own schools. In addition, the SSB helps facilitate the running of the VA Thespian Conference by volunteering to help with duties throughout the Conference weekend.
State Student Board members must be from a school with an active Virginia ITS Troupe. Their director must support their involvement and must actively serve on the Adult State Board.
State Student Board members are required to join a committee at the Spring Planning Meeting. Committees for State Planning include - Rules Video, Encore, Communications, Womanless Beauty Pageant/ Broadway Cares, and Finding Your Way. Additionally, there is a Region Committee. It is advised that each school in attendance have at least one student on the Region Committee.
How do I become an STO/ RTO?
A maximum of two students per troupe may be selected to run for one of the STO positions. How those two students are nominated is entirely up to their Thespian Troupe and Sponsor. However, in order to run a student must meet the following criteria:
Candidate Election Process:
1. Candidates must submit their application by the appointed deadline. Candidates must attend the entire Spring planning meeting in order to be elected.
2. Candidates should make a poster (handmade or digital) which should contain (at a minimum) the candidate’s photo and a brief list of experience.
3. Candidates should prepare a brief speech introducing themselves, discussing their qualifications for the position, and any specific goals they would like to achieve while in this position. Speeches are limited to 2 minutes. Students will be cut off if they exceed 2 minutes.
4. Attendees of the Spring planning meeting will vote for STOs. They will review all candidate information via Skype, Google Hangout, or other digital medium. Meeting Hosts will coordinate this. If possible, speeches will be live streamed to each Regional Planning Meeting. Voting from troupes not in attendance will be accepted up until the day of the planning meeting. Applicant details should be reviewed on the VA Thespian website and votes submitted to the Chapter Director no later than 11 AM the day of the meeting.
5. Each school (not individuals) will have five votes for the candidates of their choice for STOs.
6. Each school will be able to nominate a candidate for RTO. They may only nominate a candidate at for their region. The region with the greatest number of students nominated for a position will be permitted one additional RTO. RTOs will be selected by the STO board.
7. Schools may not vote for candidates from their own school.
RTO and STO members are required to attend the Summer Leadership Retreat.
*If a student misses more than one meeting, he/she may lose his/her position on State Leadership.
Important Dates for STOs, RTOs, and State Student Board
May 8, 2017: STO Applications are available.
May 14, 2017: STO Applications due.
May 19, 2017: Leadership workshop deadline.
May 20, 2017 from 10am - 3pm: Planning Meetings with Elections at the following schools:
State and Central Region Meeting: New Kent High School
7365 Egypt Road
New Kent, VA 23124
Contact Victoria Kesling Councill if you plan to attend: firstname.lastname@example.org
Northern Region Meeting: Rock Ridge High School
3460 Loudoun Reserve Dr
Ashburn, VA 20148
Contact Anthony Cimino-Johnson if you plan to attend:
Early August: Leadership Retreat to be held at New Kent HS. Dates TBD.
September/ October: On Site meeting at 2017 Conference Venue.