Arts Administration, M.A.

Master of Arts in Arts Administration

About the Degree

The University of Akron Arts Administration master's program is designed to prepare students for successful careers in all disciplines of the nonprofit arts. The strength of the program lies in a commitment to balancing theoretical study in the classroom with application through practical experiences and internships.

The curriculum provides students with a philosophical base for decision-making and planning, as well as a comprehensive range of techniques for working effectively in the field. Although core courses are offered by Arts Administration faculty, an essential part of the Arts Administration master's program is the selection of courses in such areas as business, communication, law, computer technology, and public administration.

The Arts Administration program emphasizes the role of the arts in the community, and the contribution the arts make to society. Therefore, core curriculum covers the key fields of arts administration, including:

  • Strategic planning
  • Board Cultivation
  • Policy
  • Marketing
  • Development ( Grant preparation, Donor Care, Cultivation)
  • Financial management
  • Legal issues in the arts
  • Audience development
  • Branding

Salary and Career Outlook

As more and more arts organizations recognize the value of the highly specialized training that people with degrees in arts administration receive, they are increasingly seeking out candidates with masters' level training for key staff positions.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) classifies arts administrators as art directors. As a whole, job opportunities for these professionals are expected to grow approximately 3% between 2012 and 2022. This does not apply to all types of organizations, however. For example, opportunities are expected to increase for advertising, public relations and special services; motion picture and video industries; and specialized design services. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

Salaries for arts administrators are highly dependent upon both the size and geographic location of the organization. An entry-level position in a development department might pay in the neighborhood of $20-25,000; a senior position (Executive Directors or Operation Directors) in a small organization might pay $35-45,000; a senior position in a larger, more established organization might be in the $60-$80,000 range, and even higher for large organizations in very large cities.

Why Akron?

  • The Arts Administration program offers the opportunity to gain real world experience and expand administrative skill sets while working on university productions with the dance and theater programs and within the university art galleries.
  • Extraordinary internship opportunities in all arts disciplines are routinely offered to our students. These internships often lead to employment.
  • The programs proximity to a large number of arts hubs (Downtown Akron, Playhouse Square, University Circle, and Gordon Square) provides opportunities for experiencing the arts, volunteering and networking in the field.
  • The program provides a comprehensive curriculum which prepares students for employment in a variety of positions. Some universities focus heavily on a specific area such as management or development.
  • The programs strong tie to the non-profit business community fosters experiential learning opportunities for students.
  • The program cultivates opportunities for students to become involved in local arts advocacy.
  • Faculty includes individuals who are or have been respected arts administrators.
  • Quality of the CBA business courses and the flexibility to individualize study within the business block of credits is quite.

Graduates from the program have landed jobs in areas such as:

  • Officer of The Cleveland Orchestra
  • Manager of The Frick Historical Museum
  • Manager of the Cleveland Playhouse Theater

Contact Information

Contact Information:

Professor James Slowiak

(330) 972-5909