Arts Administration

A career in arts administration combines interest in the arts with business expertise and fundraising skills. Arts administrators work for symphony orchestras, art galleries, museums, ballet companies, musical groups, theatres and other organizations. While a bachelor's degree is sufficient for an entry-level job, a graduate degree may be needed for advancement. For more information about museum-specific opportunities, check out the “Museums” document.



An arts administrator takes care of the business operations of an arts-oriented organization. Employers of arts administrators may be not-for-profit organizations or government agencies. Arts administrators may also work for corporations or foundations who support the arts.

In an arts organization, such as a theatre, an arts administrator often manages and promotes the activities of the organization. This involves interacting with artists, performers, supporters and organizational staff. Arts administrators usually have at least a bachelor's degree, and most have a master's or doctorate. Many have backgrounds in the arts as well, ranging from music to sculpting.

At small organizations, arts administrators often juggle several tasks -- for example, office management, fundraising, and public relations. At larger organizations, jobs are usually more specialized.

Possible occupational titles may include the following: executive director, program coordinator, volunteer coordinator, and director/coordinator/assistant for many departments such as development/fundraising, outreach, audience development, marketing, publicity, publications, education, business, accounting, legal, and human resources.


Resources and Job Boards


Professional Organizations

Association of Arts Administration Educators