To become a successful arts administrator, and meet the evolving needs of the field, one must have applied leadership acumen as well as the creative tools to facilitate and evaluate the needs of visual, performing, cultural, and arts service organizations. The MAA harnesses the interdisciplinary and creative power of the College of Fine Arts (COFA) at Ohio University. The curriculum merges arts administration knowledge with training in discipline-specific management. Foundational courses that emphasize arts leadership, governance, management, and development are taken alongside courses in a student’s specialized area. Students choose one area of specialization (Community Dance, Music Leadership, Museum Studies, Theater and Production Management, or Visual Arts Management). The MAA is a 30-credit hour degree program. Full-time enrollment has a normative completion of one calendar year (August to August). The option for part-time enrollment is available and will have varied completion times, typically two years.
1. Gain an understanding of the social, political, economic, and artistic environment
in which nonprofit arts organizations work.
2. Recognize the challenges facing arts organizations and how relationships with
donors, and stakeholders shape the interconnectedness of these systems within the organization.
3. Gain competencies in essential arts administration functions including
communication, public relations, cultural policy, marketing, advocacy, governance, ethical leadership, community engagement, and resource development and management.
4. Become familiar with organizational culture in a nonprofit environment including
relationship building, roles of various stakeholders, strategic thinking, and the spoken and unspoken thoughts, assumptions, and principles that arts administrators might employ to guide management practices and decision making when working with diverse groups of people.
5. Apply theories and use a variety of applications to develop strategic plans, build
an audience base, promote nonprofit arts organizations with internal and external
stakeholders, and advance culturally responsible management practices.
6. Learn effective fundraising and development strategies.
7. Solve problems when working with new ideas, challenges, organizations, and
8. Advance analytical and ethical leadership skills to communicate and manage
9. Demonstrate understanding of the assumptions and principles that arts
administrators might employ to guide professional practice and decision making.
The MAA Program Curriculum is attached as program materials.
All applicants must submit the following for review:
● Completed Application Form
● Minimum of 3.0 GPA
● 2-3 Letters of Recommendation (1 must be from student's major discipline of study)
● Resume or Curriculum Vitae
As part of the application process, students applying to the MAA choose one area of specialized arts study. Students must also complete the stated admission requirements for that specialization to be fully considered for the degree program. The following, additional materials will be used to review and admit students into the specialized areas of study within the MAA (please note that interviews are not required to be face-to-face). Some areas may allow for the submission of additional, supporting documents or materials.
● Interview with dance faculty
● Resume that details dance education and experience
● Letter of recommendation from a faculty member in the major discipline of the student
● Essay stating how Museum Studies meets the academic goals of the student.
● Interview with a School of Music administrator
● Bachelor's degree in music or equivalent professional experience is required
Theater and Production Management:
- Interview with theater faculty
- Resume or portfolio that details professional theater (or equivalent) experience
- Bachelor's degree in theater or equivalent professional experience is required
Visual Arts Management:
- A short essay (500 words) outlining the applicant's background, interest in fine arts, and aspirations in the field.