Artwork at the Heidelberg Project, Detroit.

Artwork at the Heidelberg Project, Detroit.

Your experience in the Arts Management Program

There is one constant around the world: change.  Social and political upheaval dots the international landscape as a new generation demands equality, inclusion, access, and action on a number of issues ranging from the climate and politics to labor practices.  The arts are no exception.  Audiences are changing, artists are demanding fair wages, and institutions are being challenged.

In times like these, the arts need managers that know the power of persuasion, data collecting and analysis, and design to market, finance, and advocate effectively for sustainable arts environments. Equally important, they need to understand the pressures and cultural systems to be negotiated in order to be successful.

UB’s Arts Management program prepares you for this work.  You will take courses in business and law; cultural theory as a foundation to understand changes in local, national, and international art landscapes; and finish with hands-on, experiential practice with existing arts entities and institutions. 

From an alum...

Going back to the program’s strength - a balance of theory and practice - I was well prepared to work in an organizational setting as well as an academic setting.

-Dan Shanahan (2011)


The curriculum has been carefully selected to instruct you on how arts are managed, but also position you to engage critically with why the arts are managed.  This dual position prepares you to function today and adapt to the demands of tomorrow.  But as a student, you’ll do more than read about arts management.  Our faculty invites a range of speakers who confront, in real time, the issues you will be discussing.


Arts management doesn’t happen in a classroom, it happens where arts and audience meet.  You will visit arts organizations and managers locally, regionally, and internationally to broaden your perspective and examine how differing policies influence the day-to-day management of the arts.  


On our unique summer schools, you can explore how the arts function within different cultures.  You will have discussions with leading professionals and artists, participate in seminars, visit arts institutions, and explore how environments affect the art/audience relationship.


In the same way we value field visits, we value practical experience.  The curriculum is designed so that you learn about arts management in the first year to position you to practice it in your second year.  Our Fieldwork and Managing Arts Spaces courses make sure your first experience isn't your first day on the job.