Arts Administration Concentration FAQ
Training and knowledge for managers, artists, performers and arts enthusiasts who
wish to pursue professional activities or careers related to managing, producing or
advancing the cultural arts.
Performance and institutional arts organizations, including museums and art galleries,
symphonies and musical groups, theatres, and dance companies; in community or regional
centers for the arts; in government, corporate, and foundation agencies that are concerned
with the development of the arts.
Arts administrators most often work in the nonprofit sector and the program we offer
reflects this model. The U.S. nonprofit arts industry employs more than 5 million
full-time persons and there are more than 30,000 nonprofit arts organizations in U.S.
However, there are many aspects in the field that can be helpful to those wishing
to pursue work in the for-profit sector, such as working in artist management, in
the music industry, commercial theatre, dance schools, and commercial art galleries.
The coursework in arts administration can be helpful to artists and performers to
learn skills that can help them better manage their own artistic careers.
The demands of the arts manager has grown more sophisticated (beyond connoisseurship),
thereby demanding formalized training. The best preparation for a career in arts administration
is an academic background enhanced by practical, professional experience. However,
most arts administrators learned "on the job" and only 20% of working professionals
ever completed coursework in arts administration at the undergraduate college level.
Goucher is among only a handful of schools in the U.S. who offer a packaged program
of courses for undergraduates.
Goucher currently offers a Concentration in Arts Administration (which is a designation
a few credits less than a MINOR). The concentration is seven courses/21 credits total:
three core courses in Arts Administration (BUS 170, 270, 375); three courses in Business
Management (BUS 110, 120, 229); and one course in Economics (EC 100). Goucher also
offers a Master of Arts in Arts Administration
, a graduate program designed for working professionals who have had a few years of
All three core courses feature several guest speakers of working arts administrators,
which helps to reinforce learning from text and lectures and connects them to working
professionals. A hallmark of the program is that the learning is often based on real-life
samples and from case studies of existing organizations. The assignments are real-life
applications of work that arts administrators do, such as writing or creating mission
statements, fundraising letters, budgets, business plan/grant proposals, and organizational
assessment or evaluations.
Any undergraduate student enrolled at Goucher may take one, two, or all three core
courses in Arts Administration (BUS 170, 270, 375); these are done in a sequence.
However, in order to complete the program as a designated concentration, you must
major in an art form. The courses in the arts (Art, Dance, Music, or Theatre) provide
a solid foundation in an art form. Students must complete their artistic major that
covers both historical/theoretical and studio work.
That's fine and is an excellent way to build more comprehensive management and business
skills. Some students complete their major in an art form, add the concentration and
also pursue either a minor or a major in Business Management as well. Only those completing
a major in the Arts, however, are eligible for the official designation of Concentration
in Arts Administration.
Internships are a terrific way to explore the field and define your own career goals.
Students have extensive opportunities for rewarding internships. Goucher is strategically
located, with access to numerous arts organizations in the Baltimore-Washington area
as well as in New York and other cities. Many students complete arts-related internships
for college credit; most are done on a volunteer basis but some opportunities may
pay wages or offer a stipend. Some complete their internship during a semester while
in Baltimore, in summers in Baltimore, "at home," or elsewhere.
Our students have been employed or completed internships with organizations such as
the Baltimore Museum of Art, Pennsylvania Ballet, Peabody Conservatory of Music, Wide
Angle Youth Media, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Joy of Motion Dance Center, New York
City Ballet, Young Audiences of Maryland, Center Stage, Kennedy Center, Studio Theatre,
Baltimore Clayworks, National Gallery of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art/Denver, National
Music Festival, and dozens more. Several students have started their own nonprofits
or have attended graduate school, including programs at Goucher, Columbia University,
the Pratt Institute, Roehampton University and Sotheby's in London.
The program we offer focuses on the American model, however we are also working to
internationalize our offerings whenever possible. We have had Arts Administration
students complete internships in Australia, Brazil, and Greece; others have studied
abroad in semester-long programs in such countries as Italy, the United Kingdom, Denmark,
and Australia or have participated in one of Goucher's 3-week Intensive Courses Abroad,
including performing arts programs in Scotland and France. In May/June 2016, Goucher
will offer The Arts of Amsterdam: Arts Administration and Behind-the-Scenes of the Visual and
Performing Arts in Holland
The Concentration is 21 credits (7, three-credit courses) in addition to the arts
major requirements, which is typically an additional minimum of 27 credits. Please
note that each department's requirements vary, however some offer reduced credits
within the arts major to accommodate the additional Arts Administration courses. Please
refer to the academic catalogue within your major for more details.
The Introductory class, BUS 170, is offered every Spring; the second course BUS 270,
is offered every Fall; and the capstone seminar, BUS 375, is offered every Spring.
These courses must be done in a sequence. There are seven courses total; most students
are able to take two courses relating to the concentration per semester. It is recommended
to take BUS 170 either as a freshman or a sophomore and begin the Economics and Accounting
courses no earlier than your sophomore year. At minimum, you would need to start by
spring of your junior year in order to complete the 3 core courses (170 in spring
of junior year; 270 in fall of senior year, and 375 in spring of senior year).
In order to complete the 21-credit CONCENTRATION:
Three core courses:
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 170: Introduction to Arts Administration
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 270: Case Studies in Arts Administration
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 375: Strategic Leadership for the Arts Administrator
- ECONOMICS 100 (Introduction to Economics) OR ECONOMICS 101 (Micro Economics)
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 110 (Principles of Accounting I)
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 120 (Principles of Accounting 2)
- BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 229 (Marketing Management)
This, of course, depends on your interests, professional ambitions, and strengths.
Other courses recommended include BUS 105 (Quantitative Reasoning for Business), BUS
245 (Organizational Behavior), BUS 247 (Introduction to Human Resource Management),
CBL 115 (Gateway to Service), and THE 105 (Effective Public Speaking) Other frequently
recommended courses include Advertising and Public Relations; Community Development
courses in Peace Studies and/or Service-based Learning, or additional Business courses
such as Financial Management or Investments.
Contact Alison Cahen Lohr, Instructor and Program Advisor, Arts Administration Concentration