Arts Administration B.A.

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CAHSS Advising

120 Montague Hall
1211 Ordean Court
Duluth, MN 55812
United States

Program Type
Bachelor of Arts
CAHSS Interdepartmental
College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences

About this Program

The B.A. in Arts Administration is for students who have both a passion for the arts and a talent for business. The program develops skills for those who want to be leaders in the arts and to make positive change in their communities and beyond.

  • Arts administrators are responsible for facilitating the day-to-day operations of an organization, as well as implementing goals and strategies that fulfill the group’s mission or philosophy.
  • You will be trained to lead arts organizations in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors, which include dance companies, theatres, museums, symphony orchestras, cultural centers, arts training schools, art galleries, touring companies, and performance venues.
  • Duties of an arts administrator can include staff management, marketing oversight, budget management, public relations and cross-sector collaboration, fundraising, grant writing, program development and assessment, board development, and arts advocacy.

UMD has something special! 

  • Our artistic and design faculty stimulate and provoke students as independent thinkers and creators who explore various media and methods
  • Our faculty continue to create, exhibit, and publish research regularly, in addition to teaching and providing mentorship and career guidance
  • Our fine arts division has two state-of-the-art lab spaces for use by students in conjunction with faculty research: the interdisciplinary Visual and Digital Imaging Lab (Viz Lab) and the Motion + Media Across Disciplines Lab (MMAD Lab), which offers students opportunities in 3D motion capture and high definition video production
  • UMD has the variety and quality of musical instruction that you would expect from a place three times larger, with the individualized instruction and care of an institution half the size.
  • Learn, practice, and perform with students from many different states and multiple continents in beautiful Weber Music Hall, a dedicated Department of Music facility that is recognized across the country for its top-tier acoustics, as well as the flexible Marshall Performing Arts Center.
  • Theater students at UMD connect with faculty on a level that is unprecedented in higher education. Not having to compete with graduate students for production opportunities, our graduates leave UMD with portfolios and resumes far more extensive than the average undergraduate student. We are dedicated to the training of excellent theater artists and productions that are acclaimed nationally and internationally.
  • The UMD Department of Theatre is actively involved in the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival and has had multiple productions chosen to perform at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of KCACTF

Acquired Skills

Students of Arts Administration will:

  • Gain insight and develop approaches to creating and stewarding the community relationships and collaborations necessary for sustaining a vibrant arts community 
  • Develop strategic planning, communications, financial, and managerial skills in order to better lead organizations in complex environments 
  • Advocate for the arts and culture sector by communicating impacts across multiple spheres such as economic, political, ethical, technological, and diverse social environments
  • Be able to describe the impacts that arts organizations make when educating multiple constituencies and providing programming and access for all
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the creative process by describing how art and artists function in society
  • Develop skills in strategizing, planning, and executing one-time and long-term develop plans for arts organizations 

Students will be knowledgeable in: 

  • Critical and strategic thinking, and effective communication 
  • The intersection, navigation, and impact of cultural and creative practices within community dynamics 
  • Policy formation, implementation, and application relevant to culture, creativity, and the arts 
  • How to implement expertise, improve relationships, and optimize resources

Career Possibilities

  • Management & Leadership (of museums, art galleries, concert halls, theaters, dance studios, and on and on!)
  • Advertising
  • Advocacy & Cultural Policy
  • Community Arts
  • Consulting
  • Development/Fundraising
  • Education & Community Engagement
  • Film & Television
  • Finance
  • Marketing/Communications
  • Music/Events
  • Operations
  • Patron Services/Visitor Services
  • Programs/Program Development
  • Research/Analysis
  • Technology Management

Recent UMD Graduates Job Placement Data

Student Clubs

Arts Administration students are welcome to participate in any student clubs that match their interests. Clubs in the fine arts may vary by year but often include an Art Education Club, Student Photography Cooperative, Mud Guild (Ceramics Club), Art History Symposium, Media Arts Club, Student Design Organization (SDO), Music Student Association, the National Association for Music Education, Stage 2 Theatre, United States Institute of Theatre Technology (USITT) student chapter, and Attitudes Dance Association.

Arts Administration students may also be interested in business-related student groups within the Labovitz School of Business & Economics, including the Management ClubADMAR (Advertising and Marketing Club), or the UMD Entrepreneurship Club.


Arts Administrations students are welcome to -- but are not required to -- complete a minor or second major.

Laptop computers are required for all incoming UMD students. See Technology Requirements.

Four Year Sequence Program Sample Plan