Site Closed

Ford’s Theatre Society and the National Park Service closed the historic site starting March 14. That closure currently extends through May 17. Our production of “Guys and Dolls” has been postponed to spring 2021.

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Inspired by Abraham Lincoln’s oratory, National Oratory Fellows are a network of teachers who cultivate student voices in Grades 5-8 by making public speaking a part of the everyday classroom experience.

Drawing on Abraham Lincoln’s legacy and example as a powerful orator, you will work closely with our teaching artists and staff to learn the art and science behind compelling and effective public speaking. You will also develop your own powerful voice as a teacher. After this fellowship, you will have practical skills to teach text analysis, public speaking, performance and speech writing in your classroom.

This program is an opportunity to build a national network of like-minded teachers and strengthen oratory skills. We will use video conferencing to connect teachers and Ford’s staff, including an online meeting space to keep conversations active and collaborative.

Fellows travel to Washington, D.C., twice a year to plan and share work. At times throughout the program, they bring student delegates with them to learn and perform on the stage of Ford’s Theatre. You will need internet access and a webcam to participate in this fellowship.

Applications for the 2020-21 school year are now being accepted. Apply by June 12, 2020.


“The program has made me a better, more confident teacher...I believe it to be the finest professional development experience of my career.”

- Dave McIntire, The Independent School


Lincoln Online Oratory Project

Learn and Speak Lincoln’s Words

Not ready to be a Fellow? Try this instead! Your class receives three Teaching Artist visits and creates a video of a speech performance. Application window for the 2019-20 school year will open in June 2019. This project continues year round.


Support our National Oratory Fellows with a donation today.

“[The program provides] extended, in-depth learning, hands-on resources and support for classroom change, and a national professional learning community.”
Catherine Nelson, Ph.D., Independent Scholar
National Oratory Fellows and Students from 2013 in front of the Lincoln Memorial.