Arts Administration Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is Arts Administration?
  2. Why should I study Arts Administration?
  3. What are some examples of jobs in the Arts Administration field?
  4. What are the Admissions Requirements?
  5. What is the deadline for admissions?
  6. Is the GRE required?
  7. What is a nontraditional applicant?
  8. What should I put in my Resume?
  9. What should I put in my Statement of Purpose?
  10. What should be in my Letters of Recommendation?
  11. Am I prepared for graduate school?
  12. What is the difference between graduate schools and professional schools?
  13. What is the difference between an MFA and an MA degree?
  14. How do I schedule an interview with the Director?
  15. Who are the faculty?
  16. Where is Cedar City, Utah?
  17. How much does it cost?
  18. How can I contact the Financial Aid Office?
  19. What if I need additional money?

What is Arts Administration?
Arts Administration is the systematic organization of business principles, people, and practices necessary to fund, maintain, promote, produce, and/or present an artistic product for a cultivated audience. It involves working with artists, patrons, staff, and other administrators. Responsibilities as an Arts Administrator may include, but are not limited to: strategic planning, marketing, fundraising, budgeting/finance, advocacy, education, program development, and community relations.

Why should I study Arts Administration?
Arts Administration is a crucial part of the success of arts organizations and provides an avenue for you to share your love of the arts, while maintaining the lifestyle you may envision. Benefits to being an Arts Administrator often include salaried positions, insurance packages, regular office hours, vacation time, and job security.

What are some examples of jobs in the Arts Administration field?
Positions held by Arts Administration graduates are as diverse as the field itself and the many arts disciplines within it. Careers can be found in various not-for-profit and for-profit arts organizations as well as in not-for-profit organizations outside the arts arena. Examples of such positions often fall within the general categories of:

  • Executive Leadership
  • Production Management
  • General Management
  • Company Management
  • Fundraising
  • Human Resource Management
  • Special Events Management
  • Financial Management
  • Marketing
  • Advocacy
  • Press and Public Relations
  • Government Relations
  • Publications & Information Technology
  • Union Leadership
  • Box Office Management
  • Arts Education

What are the Admissions Requirements?
Please visit admissions for more information on requirements.

What is the deadline for admissions?
The deadline for the Master of Fine Arts track is March 1st and the deadline for the Master of Arts track (Online) is September 1st.

Is the GRE required?
GRE test scores are not required. The Admissions Committee will focus acceptance decisions on other requirements, such as a personal interview, transcripts, resumes and statements of purpose. Even though it is not required, students are welcome to take the GRE to give the Admissions Committee a more complete picture of academic success.

What is a nontraditional applicant?
A nontraditional student is married, over 25, has a family, and/or are returning to school after an absence of three years or more. Nontraditional students are as welcome to apply as traditional students. In fact, nontraditional students’ diversity and varied experiences can add a beneficial perspective to the overall classroom experience. Prospective nontraditional graduate students must be sure to have the time to dedicate to a rigorous scholastic schedule, even with outside responsibilities.

What should I put in my Resume?
The resume should include academic, professional, and volunteer experience. The quality of your leadership skills can be assessed through the following experiences, as included in a resume:

  • Undergraduate leadership, experience, and extracurricular activities
  • Volunteer work in any field 
  • Internship with professional arts or nonprofit organizations
  • Paid professional experience in the arts or nonprofit field, as well as in other sectors

What should be in my Statement of Purpose?
The statement of purpose should be a snapshot of where you are coming from, where you are now, and where you want to go (Past, Present, Future). It should state why you are qualified to be in the program and how you would use the degree upon graduation.

What should be in the Letters of Recommendation?
As soon as possible, select three people who are familiar with your work habits, academic ability, and personality. These individuals may be professors, advisors, supervisors, colleagues, or community leaders with whom you have interacted. In order for them to write the best letters of recommendation possible, provide them with your plans for graduate school, additional background about yourself, and any other details that support the strengths you’ve demonstrated. You should also share with them the SUUAA website so they are familiar with our work and goals. Letters of recommendation can take longer than expected to be completed, so start early.

Am I prepared for graduate school?
Graduate school differs from undergraduate study. It is more focused, more individualized, and requires more dedication to studies than do most undergraduate programs. Because you are a part of a smaller group, you must be ready to carry your weight with assignments, discussions, research, and projects. Your professors and classmates will expect you to:

  • Read a large amount of material on a regular basis
  • Take thorough lecture notes
  • Lead and participate in class discussions, study sessions, and professional seminars
  • Write intensive papers
  • Prepare professional presentations

What is the difference between graduate schools and professional schools?
Graduate schools offer study in numerous areas, while professional schools provide training in specific areas, such as law, dentistry, or medicine. Careers for graduate school graduates are just as varied as the fields they can study, whereas law school graduates will most likely become lawyers and medical school graduates will most likely become doctors, even though there are many different types of both. SUU is considered a graduate school.

What is the difference between an MFA and an MA degree?
A Master of Fine Arts degree (MFA) is a terminal degree, meaning it is the highest degree achievable within a field of study. Graduates are also able to teach at an institution of higher education with an MFA. A Master of Arts degree (MA), on the other hand, is often considered an academic step toward earning a doctorate in a related field. In the Arts Administration Program here at SUU, another difference is that the MFA track is taught face-to-face, while the MA track is taught entirely online.

How do I schedule an admissions interview with the Director?
You don't! Applicants for the Master of Fine Arts Track who make it past the first "paper" stage of the admissions process will be contacted by the Program Director in March to schedule a day-long, in person interview, which is the second stage of that application process. Applicants for the Master of Arts Track who make it past the first "paper" stage of the admissions process will be contacted by the Program Director starting in June to interview for a position in the cohort. After June, the Program Director schedules interviews on a two-week rolling basis once a completed application is received and the Admissions Committee moves it past that first "paper" stage. 

Who are the Faculty?
Please visit our faculty page to get to know our Arts Administration faculty.

Where is Cedar City, Utah?
Cedar City is located in southwestern Utah about 2 1/2 hours from Las Vegas, Nevada and 3 1/2 hours from Salt Lake City, Utah. The area has a population of approximately 26,000 people. It is known as the Festival City because of a variety of community activities that go on during the year. Learn more about the area here.

How much does it cost?
Tuition and fee amounts can be found on the Southern Utah University Cashier’s Office webpage. Select "Tuition and Fees" and then select "Graduate Tuition Rates" or "Online Graduate Tuition Rates" (depending on the track to which you are applying). 

How can I contact the Financial Aid Office?
You can contact Financial Aid Office through their website at www.suu.edu/ss/financial/.

What if I need additional money?
For both the MFA and MA programs, student loans, scholarships, and grants can be explored through the Financial Aid office on the SUU campus. Please note that for students in the MFA program, additional employment outside the program is not encouraged. Balancing your priorities while in the program will be critical. Careful planning will be necessary to ensure that you can spend sufficient time and energy on your studies, as well as your life outside the program. Please check with the Advisor before taking on additional work.