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Interdisciplinary Arts, Arts Leadership, BA

Combine your arts discipline with business management skills in the interdisciplinary arts - arts leadership program. Lead complex arts organizations.

About this Program

Effectively Lead Arts Organizations

The BA in interdisciplinary arts with specialization in arts leadership is designed for students who want to create, manage or administer creative activities within a specific arts discipline.

The program combines classroom learning with an internship in a local arts organization so you’re ready for life after graduation, whether you want to run your own business as a working artist or work at a museum or theatre.

In the arts leadership specialization, you’ll learn the professional and business skills needed to lead and succeed in today’s arts environment.

Tailored for arts organizations, your courses develop the specific business, professional and personal skills necessary to lead complex arts organizations.

You’ll learn the latest business management, finance, marketing and fundraising skills and strategies to lead nonprofit arts organizations.

With the help of your faculty adviser, you’ll design a program where you specialize in arts leadership while also continuing in your creative work.

Arts Leadership Degree at a Glance

Learn how this degree from the Department of Performing Arts and Arts Leadership will contribute to your career goals. Then, explore course requirements and see how impactful a Seattle University degree can be.

The BA in interdisciplinary arts with specialization in arts leadership is designed for students who want to create, manage or administer creative activities within a specific arts discipline.

Program highlights

  • Flexibility: students balance the arts leadership core with classes in other areas like business or visual and performing arts.
  • Coursework: classes are offered in finance, marketing, entrepreneurship, law and fundraising in the arts.
  • Internship: all students take a 5-credit internship in a local arts organization, like the Seattle Art Museum or Seattle Repertory Theatre.

Four-Year Program of Study

Junior Transfer Program of Study

We expect students in the arts leadership program to achieve the following:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the political, social, technological and economic contexts in the field of arts administration.
  • Apply the principles of leadership and entrepreneurship as they are uniquely realized within arts organizations.
  • Recognize and address moral and ethical challenges within the arts as informed by the Jesuit Catholic tradition.
  • Understand and apply financial tools and analysis to inform sound decision-making and communicate financial results to key stakeholders.
  • Apply marketing theories and concepts to develop audiences and to promote the arts as a valuable social sector.
  • Understand how to develop effective fundraising strategies to raise funds from institutional, government and individual donors.
  • Demonstrate effective communication in speech and in writing.

In the Minor in Interdisciplinary Arts – Arts Leadership, you immerse yourself in a dynamic blend of artistic exploration and leadership development. Guided by expert faculty, you navigate a rich tapestry of disciplines, honing your creative expression while gaining the skills to lead and shape the future of the arts. To earn a minor degree, you’ll complete at least 30 credits in this area.

What You’ll Learn

Learn about the classes you’ll take as a student here.

Real-World Experience: Arts Leadership Internship

Students in the arts leadership program take a five-credit internship at a local arts organization.

The arts leadership internship combines classroom learning with real-world experience.

This internship provides students the opportunity to apply their knowledge in resource development, arts marketing, audience development and general management to actual positions within Puget Sound arts organizations.

People Enjoying Art at a Gallery

Arts Opportunities in Seattle

Seattle University is part of the thriving Capitol Hill Arts District, the first arts district named by the City of Seattle and the densest arts neighborhood in the State of Washington!

There are over 40 arts organizations in the district, including the Photographic Center Northwest, 12th Avenue Arts, Northwest Film Forum, Frye Art Museum, Artist Trust, and Hugo House.

The 5th Avenue Theater, A Contemporary Theater, Seattle Art Museum, Wa Na Wari, the Wing Luke Museum, and Benaroya Hall – home to the Seattle Symphony – are also nearby.

Easily accessible by public transit is the Seattle Center, home to the Space Needle and several arts organizations, including the Museum of Pop Culture, The Vera Project, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Opera, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Seattle Shakespeare Company and the Seattle Children’s Theatre.

The Seattle Art Museum and Benaroya Hall, home to the Seattle symphony, are located downtown.

This is just a sampling of the hundreds of arts organizations all over the Seattle area, providing Seattle U students many opportunities during their education and beyond.

Prepared For Success

Emilio Garcia Corona
Click to play the video

Arts Leaders Who Make a Difference

Learn about the arts leadership program through the experience of student storyteller Emilio Garcia-Corona.

Seattle University students practice for their upcoming performances

Creative Spaces: Lee Center

The Lee Center is Seattle University’s state-of-the-art performance and exhibition space on the corner of Twelfth Avenue and East Marion Street. Designed to enrich the artistic experience of students, faculty, staff, and the greater community, the center houses the "black-box theater" John Eshelman Stage, scene shop, costume shop, green room, dressing rooms, and Hedreen Gallery


Studios and Galleries for Artists

The Visual Arts Department includes several studios and galleries that art and visual culture studies students can benefit from. Explore the light-filled spaces dedicated to developing artists and showcasing student work.

People Learning About Printmaking

Creative Spaces: Billodue Makerspace

The Billodue Makerspace at Seattle University, located in the Jim and Janet Sinegal Center for Science and Innovation (Sinegal Center), provides creative spaces for artistic exploration.You can participate in various maker-related activities including sewing, fiber arts, 3D printing, laser cutting, electronics, vinyl cutting and glass work.

A information session at Seattle University

Pathways to Professional Formation

The College of Arts and Sciences is committed to helping you through your lifetime journey of professional formation and discernment. We offer opportunities to deepen and broaden your understanding of your professional identity.

Featured Faculty

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