Coaching | Key Events | Support
The arts encompasses many possible career areas and roles — some students may wish to be a practicing artist or performer, while others may want to work in supportive roles such as those found in arts administration. Still others may want to work in larger industries, such as film, media, or fashion. One of the most common attributes of careers in the arts is that there is rarely a single path that people will follow. Just like creativity and art itself, each career journey is unique and made up of many different stops and experiences along the way.
The Piper Center is eager to support you in exploring careers in the arts, as well as finding jobs, internships, and other opportunities. Please stop by the Piper Center anytime during business hours to have an initial conversation with a Peer Advisor. When you are ready to go further, meet with our arts career coach Meghan McMillan by scheduling an appointment in Handshake.
Job & Internship Searches in the Arts
Posted vs. Hidden: Posted internships are usually found on an employer’s website or other job & internship site. However, opportunities in the arts are more likely to be “hidden”, meaning they may not be entirely visible in online searches. As a result, you are more likely to identify and obtain job and internship opportunities through networking or a direct inquiry. Arts organizations are less likely to post their open jobs and internships widely on career sites and will instead primarily post on their own webpages and rely on word of mouth. (Larger, nationally-known organizations. Therefore, while it is often easier to browse websites for opportunities, often the best internships or jobs come about through relationship-based strategies. Leave plenty of time for networking activities – in fact, the more time you spend with this search strategy, the more likely you are to find an opportunity you really want. Be brave!
Venue-based Search: One of the best ways to identify jobs and internships in the arts is to search by venue. In a given geography, identify all of the arts venues that are of interest to you and search on their websites or inquire directly with relevant staff. If you don’t see opportunities in the present, ask when they typically post internships or how they usually post for open full-time jobs. You can use the Art Venues by City/State list to help you.
- Internships: Excluding performance opportunities, most arts organizations will post and hire for summer internships in the spring – starting around February. Larger, nationally and internationally prominent venues are more likely to post and hire for summer internship programs starting in December or January. Occasionally internships do exist during the fall or spring semesters and hiring for those opportunities will generally occur in the term prior.
- Jobs: Full-time roles in the arts typically come available as needed, usually when there is a vacancy that needs to be filled. Therefore, seniors who are seeking full-time opportunities will need to wait until the very end of their senior year (late March, April or May) to begin actively applying for opportunities. This is because organizations will expect you to start soon after you accept the offer.
Highlighted Opportunities: Follow the link ‘Highlighted Arts Opportunities In Handshake to access jobs and internships that have been flagged by the Fine Arts coach in the Piper Center. (Note: The number of highlighted jobs and internships will vary.)
General search resources across a broad range of arts careers.
Opening the doors to opera
Though only a junior at St. Olaf College, Darrius Morton has already auditioned for and been accepted into, the ranks of the Minnesota Opera chorus. He is performing in all five of the ensemble’s operas this season.Learn more
A theatrical learning opportunity
As a teaching assistant at the Tony Award-winning Children’s Theatre Company this summer, Christine Menge ’18 had the opportunity to work with established theater professionals and college students from across the country.Read More
Great Explorations — Glenn Hernandez ’02
In a way, every single pixel in the virtual reality game Luna belongs to Glenn Hernandez. As the game’s art director, he was responsible for crafting the overarching look for the fantastical game in which a character named Bird enters and navigates a mysterious world.Read More
Career Conversations: Autumn Berggren Hilden ’99 and Justin Hilden ’01
Autumn Berggren Hilden ’99 and Justin Hilden ’01 answer questions about their Hollywood journey.Explore