Georgia Southern University

Theatre and Performance Program Receives Full Membership in NAST


Theater program

The National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST), the national accrediting agency for theatre and theatre-related disciplines, recently granted full membership to the Theatre and Performance Program at Georgia Southern University.

There are around 3,500-4,000 theatre or theatre-related degree/certificate programs in the United States, and only 400 of them are members of NAST. The Theatre and Performance Program previously held associate memberships in NAST for five years, but it is now one of this select group of universities in the United States to receive full membership.

The march towards full membership started more than seven years ago with a 200-plus page self study, a five-year plan and a consultation visit before the first NAST site visit in November of last year.

“This accreditation body is setup to highlight what you are good at and what you are capable of doing,” said Kelly Berry, M.F.A., director of theatre at Georgia Southern. “From the beginning until now, we cleaned up curriculum a good bit. There is a good bit more rigor in academics that has taken place over the past five years.”

After the site visit, NAST committee members voted on the Program’s full membership in March.

The Theatre and Performance Program is housed in the Department of Communication Arts and has a long-standing reputation for excellence in artistic achievement among industry professionals. The program provides students with opportunities to perform, design, and direct in two state of the art performance facilities.

NAST, founded in 1965, is an organization of schools, conservatories, colleges, and universities. It establishes national standards for undergraduate and graduate degrees and other credentials.

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (CLASS) is the largest of the eight colleges that make up Georgia Southern University, and it plays a central role in every student’s core of knowledge. CLASS, also described as the University’s College of the Creative Mind, prepares students to achieve academic excellence, develop their analytical skills, enhance their creativity and embrace their responsibilities as citizens of their communities, their nations and the world. CLASS offers more than 20 undergraduate degrees and several interdisciplinary minors from its 11 departments and five academic centers. CLASS offers eight master’s degrees, two graduate certificates and one doctoral degree.  For more information, visit

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving approximately 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelors, masters and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education.

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