Subject: lead: new national report on art student debt BFAMFAPhD
A friend tells me that you might be interested in this report a group of volunteers has been working on for the past year, on student debt and arts education, and the impact of expensive art degrees and future work prospects.
BFAMFAPhD is about to release a written report, animated video, and interactive site about the lives of working artists and arts graduates nationally. This coincides with our work in Crossing Brooklyn, now on view at the Brooklyn Museum.
If you are interested in our work, please see the media below, and do not hesitate to contact us for more information. We ask that you do not share this media until 2pm this afternoon, when we are ready for web traffic.
WHY DID WE MAKE THIS REPORT?
Loan officers insist that art students can afford art school tuition, repaying student loans over time by working in the arts. This is not our experience. We decided that it was time to make our own report. Connecting our lived experiences to national trends, we wanted to know: What is the impact of rent, debt, and precarity on working artists and arts graduates nationally?
HOW DID WE MAKE THIS REPORT?
Artists Report Back
uses data about artists’ demographics, occupations, educational attainment, field of degree, and earnings as recorded by The Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey (ACS) to make statements about the current conditions and contradictions of working artists and arts graduates.
WHAT DID WE FIND?
In the United States, 40 percent of working artists do not have a bachelor’s degree in any field. Only 10 percent of arts graduates are working artists. Though arts graduates may acquire additional opportunities and skills from attending art school, arts graduates are likely to graduate with significant student loan debt, which makes working as an artist difficult, if not impossible. Given the discrepancy between working artists and arts graduates, as well as the rising cost of tuition at art schools, the report ends with recommendations for policy makers, administrators, and educators.
See the written and animated report for more findings, including findings about the occupations that arts graduates work, the degrees that working artists hold (if any), and the predominance of white, non-Hispanic and male working artists.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information.
I've also attached the image that goes with our key finding: “Out of 2 million arts graduates nationally, only 10 percent, or 200,000 people, make their primary earnings as working artists.”
Caroline, Blair, Susan, Julian, and Vicky