New national report analyzes the impact of gender, race and socioeconomic status on arts graduates
Findings from a national study released this summer by the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project show that a postsecondary arts education affords some unique advantages for women, people of color and low income students. However, significant gaps remain and inequalities persist related to school debt, racial diversity within artistic occupations and disparities in earnings by gender.
The report, “An Uneven Canvas: Inequalities in Artistic Training and Careers,” details findings from more than 65,000 arts alumni of all ages from 120 institutions in the United States and Canada. Participating schools include public and private institutions: research universities, colleges of art and design, conservatories, liberal arts colleges, and arts high schools.
Alumni from disadvantaged backgrounds work as artists and persist in artistic careers at similar rates to those from more privileged families. Female graduates who work in the arts seem to face no wage penalty for having children or dependents, unlike women working in most other fields.
Graduates of color may be more likely to go into more commercially oriented and higher-paying arts careers, such as Web design or graphic arts. In fact, a slightly higher percentage of black alumni (47 percent) who work primarily within the arts earned over $50,000 in the previous year, compared to whites (45 percent), Asians (45 percent) and Hispanics (43 percent).
However, SNAAP data reveal that students who majored in the arts are not immune to patterns of inequality found in other educational disciplines. For example, 76 percent of black alumni and 72 percent of Hispanics accrued student loan debt in order to attend their institutions, compared to 52 percent of white alumni and 44 percent of Asians. And, only 24 percent of white respondents cited debt as a barrier to their artistic careers, compared to 36 percent and 41 percent respectively for Hispanic and black alumni. Further, blacks who carry school debt are less likely to work as artists compared to blacks with no debt (53 percent and 64 percent, respectively).
“These findings reinforce the widely known fact that debt can have significant repercussions for the career paths of graduates across all types of educational institutions, especially for minority students,” said Vanderbilt professor Steven J. Tepper, research director for SNAAP. “Arts schools are no exception. This is just further evidence that issues of access and equality do not end at admissions but can often follow graduates throughout their careers.”
Other key findings in the 2013 SNAAP Annual Report include:
- Arts graduates are overwhelmingly satisfied with their ability to be creative at work; 92 percent of first-generation students and 89 percent of black and Hispanic graduates are satisfied with their ability to be creative at their primary job
- Having had private art lessons at some point in their lives seems to benefit blacks more than whites. In terms of working as professional artists, the gap between blacks and whites almost disappears when the advantage of having had private lessons is factored in
- Social and professional networks are more important for minority alumni than for whites. Among those who have ever worked as artists, 74 percent of black, Hispanic and Asian alumni report that “a strong network of peers and colleagues” has been important for success in their artistic careers compared to 70 percent of white alumni.
- 36 percent of black alumni and 34 percent of Hispanic alumni took longer than the recommended amount of time to complete their degree, as compared to 30 percent of white alumni.
- Income gaps remain between men and women regardless of when they graduated.
“As we try to build a more inclusive and diverse arts community and industry that reflects the nation’s population and cultural histories, this report documents some of the disparities that persist for women, minorities and disadvantaged students in training and pursuing a career in the arts,” said Abel Lopez, SNAAP National Advisory Board member and chair of Americans for the Arts in Washington, D.C. “More importantly, the study identifies areas where our educational institutions can take action to address these inequities, which can lead to greater participation in the arts by diverse communities in our country. I look forward to seeing actions that will result in this change.”
Ten Simple Ways to bring more art into kids’ lives
Learning in the arts enables every child to develop the critical thinking, collaborative, and creative skills necessary to succeed in today’s ever-changing world.
But what if your child’s school doesn’t provide classes in art, music, dance, and theater? Here are ten simple ways that parents can get more art into their kids’ lives:
- Noack http://www.shellbellecouture.com/info/how-many-mgs-is-a-white-xanax-bar.php how many mgs is a white xanax bar neurotic excoriation Participate Sing, play music, read a book, dance, or draw with your child at home.
- nitrile buying xanax in mexico nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP, NADP+, NADPH) Support Encourage your child to participate in creative outlets and celebrate their participation in arts activities both in their school and the community.
- Nikolsky sign xanax 1mg pill neurosuture Go Read Visit your local library and read “the classics” together—from Mother Goose to Walt Whitman.
- nicking xanax bars 5mg neurotransmission Speak Up Attend a school board or PTA meeting and voice your support for adequately funded arts education programs as part of the school’s budget. Brush up on the facts about arts education beforehand.
- neuroregulator http://www.shellbellecouture.com/info/25-xanax-vs-10mg-valium.php 25 xanax vs 10mg valium NF2 Take The Lead Tell your child’s teacher or principal about how vital the arts are to quality education. Ask them what they need and how you can help!
- Think Local Read your local newspapers and check in regularly with the Regional Arts & Culture Council and CAN to find out about local arts and cultural events for you and your child to enjoy.
- Volunteer Donate time, supplies, or other resources to your child’s school or a local arts organization’s education programs.
- Join The Cause Join CAN and Americans for the Arts’ Cause campaign called ” Keep the Arts in Public Schools.” It’s free!
- Be An Advocate Show your support for arts education by speaking with education leaders and decision makers. Connect with CAN, the Oregon Art Education Association and Americans for the Arts to take action locally, statewide and nationally.
- Stay Informed Keep up to date on the latest arts education news by subscribing to the RSS Feed on CAN and ARTSblog.