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Program in Arts Administration
Teachers College, Columbia University
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Program in Arts Administration

In the Department of Arts & Humanities

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Internship Information > Internship Program Guide

Internship Program Guide

ARAD Internship Program

The internship is an excellent way to network, improve your professional skills, and develop a career strategy in your area of interest. You may work with an organization of your choice, selecting the visual or performing arts, or explore an entirely new area within the non-profit, profit, public, or private sectors. Internships should be supervised by a professional, full-time employee at the chosen organization and provide meaningful opportunities for direct mentorship.

Interns may not displace regular employees, per the Depart of Labor’s website.

  • Students in the ARAD Program usually take the internship during the spring semester of the first year or during the summer months. Internships during the first semester of your first year are prohibited.
  • During the semester you will be completing your internship you must be registered for course A&HG 4470. The course can be taken for zero or three credits. Tuition fees apply if taking the internship for three credits. The course is graded on a pass/fail basis.
  • You are required to complete one internship of 320 total hours, usually by working 20 hours per week during the 16-week semester, or 8 weeks at 40 hours per week over the summer.

Getting an Internship

The ARAD program does not place students in internships. Rather, students follow their interests in tandem with the Internship Coordinator to find opportunities that best suit their individual profiles as arts administrators.

Opportunities that are developed through the program’s relationship with arts organizations are circulated via the student listserv each week. While some students know the cultural landscape of New York City very well, others may be newcomers to the scene, so this listing of museums and cultural institutions may be helpful in identifying interesting opportunities. Additionally, below is a brief listing of some of the popular websites that feature a regularly updated selection of internship and job listings:

Make sure that you give yourself enough time to secure your internship. For example, if you are interested in taking your internship during the spring semester, you should be preparing applications and interviewing in the fall to have a position secured before the winter break.

If you are interested in interning for a particular organization, please speak with the Internship Coordinator, who can help to advise your application process. Students may also peruse the database of student evaluations of previous host institutions to gain a better understanding of a particular work environment.

Once You Have an Internship

Once you secure your internship, get in touch with the Internship Coordinator who will walk you through the steps for registration and getting all of the required program paperwork on file.

There are also several other requirements to receive academic credit for your internship:

  • New Student Questionnaire/Internship meeting
  • Internship Agreement form (including an Education Plan)
  • Site Visit
  • Internship Symposium
  • Student and Host Evaluations

At the beginning of your first semester, you will be asked to schedule a meeting with the Internship Coordinator to review your interests and goals. Please prepare and bring the New Student Questionnaire to this meeting. The Internship Coordinator will provide this form upon scheduling your meeting, and it can also be found on the ARAD website.

Upon beginning your internship, you will need to fill out an Agreement Form with your supervisor – which includes an Education Plan – in which you will specify several professional development outcomes.

You will also be asked to complete a short survey about your application and interview process, which helps the program gauge student interests.At a mid-point in your internship, both you and your supervisor will participate in a site visit with the Internship Coordinator, when your education goals will be reviewed.

Upon completion of your internship, both you and your supervisor will complete evaluations of the experience. Contact the Internship Coordinator for the links to these evaluations, which are completed online.

At the end of each semester, the program will organize an Internship Symposium, in which all students in registered internships will be required to participate. The Internship Symposium is a formal presentation of your experience at the host organization, where you will demonstrate the outcomes of your education objectives.

Unregistered Internships

As many as four internships may be completed over the course of the Program, but only one can be taken for credit. Many students complete unregistered internships (before or after completing the required internship) at various organizations for a shorter period of time to gain experience in a variety of disciplines. The program keeps track of all internships students complete, and every commitment requires documentation by the program.

If you plan to pursue an unregistered internship, please notify the Internship Coordinator: aradinternships@tc.columbia.edu