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How Students Can Prepare for an Art Career

How Students Can Prepare for an Art Career

Carolyn Edlund | ArtsyShark

AS: SCAD hosts all different kinds of events to help students launch careers. Can you describe them? • Employer Information Sessions
• On-campus interviewing
• Off-campus employer visits (a variety of different majors visit studios, galleries, company headquarters both nationally and internationally)
• Job and Internship Fair
• Networking Receptions
• Panel Discussions
• Round Table Discussions (usually less formal)
• Seminars/Lectures/Workshops (campus wide or in class)
• Conferences (specialized events offered for some majors more often than others)

AS: In your opinion, what are the biggest mistakes students make in preparing for their art careers?

CG: Some of the biggest mistakes students make are:

• Waiting until the last minute or not preparing at all
• Not creating their marketing materials early and maintaining them
• Minimal to no networking
• Not taking full advantage of the resources and opportunities available throughout college both on and off campus
• Not staying current with their prospective industry

AS: Could you give a “Top Three” list of the most important things an art student should do to start their career successfully?

CG: Yes, my list follows.

1. Know Yourself. Complete a realistic self-assessment to identify your strengths, weaknesses, and everything in between in regards to technical skills, transferrable skills, and personal characteristics as well. Have your 30 second elevator pitch prepared!

2. Develop and maintain your marketing materials. These materials include but not limited to your resume, cover letter, portfolio (digital and hard copy), website (requested a lot more by employers), teasers, and business cards.

3. Obtain as much experience as possible. Experience can come from volunteering, interning, freelancing, and/or working part-time or full-time. Take advantage of academic projects as well.

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