Winthrop University: Graduate School - About the MAAA Program
Contact Information
Graduate School
211 Tillman Hall
Rock Hill, SC 29733, USA
800/411-7041 (tollfree)
803/323-2292 (fax)

About the Master of Arts in Arts Administration

This graduate degree program is for individuals with experience in arts organizations who seek to enhance their effectiveness and increase their career opportunities as arts administration professionals. The emphasis of the degree is on leadership in nonprofit arts organizations with special focus on the visual arts, dance, music, theatre, museum, cultural institution, and performing arts administration. The 36-hour degree program consists of 18 weekend sessions (18 credit hours), research and practicum work (12 credit hours), and two one week-long summer institutes (6 credit hours) that are spread out over two years of half-time enrollment in the fall, spring, and summer terms. Classes meet on three weekends in the fall, three weekends in the spring, and three weekends along with one full week in the summer.

Participants are admitted in cohorts beginning in the fall semester of each year. Cohort members develop strong bonds of camaraderie that transform into a vital network of professional peers after graduation. The program features visits to nonprofit arts organization sites in the region. The faculty includes course instructors who are all working professionals in arts administration and guest lecturers with specialized expertise in marketing, law, grant-writing, advocacy, and leadership. The individual academic and career consultation and guidance that faculty members provide remains a distinctive component of the program. Every month students meet in small groups and individually with their instructors to discuss their progress and set goals for the next phase of their learning. In the first year the instructors guide students in their reflections upon their field-based internship experience. Second-year students meet with an instructor to discuss the planning, research, and writing of their capstone projects. 

Students and graduates of the program have worked at organizations such as: Arts and Science Council (Charlotte, NC); Bechtler Museum of Modern Art (Charlotte, NC); Clinton Junior College Gallery (Rock Hill, SC); McColl Center for Visual Art (Charlotte, NC); North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center and Education Institute (Charlotte, NC); North Carolina Dance Theatre (Charlotte, NC); The North Carolina Museum of Art (Raleigh, NC); and The South Carolina State Museum (Columbia, SC).

Winthrop University is a member of the Association of Arts Administration Educators (AAAE), the international professional organization that promotes standards of education in arts administration.


Mission Statement

The Master of Arts in Arts Administration program combines current theoretical study, and academic research, as well as applied practice to prepare reflective leaders to work with professional skill, creative initiative, and humane integrity in nonprofit arts environments.

MAAA Program Goals
    To provide students a curriculum of best practices in governance, audience development, financial management, and legal principles pertaining to nonprofit arts.
    To prepare students for leadership roles in community engagement with the arts, arts advocacy, and arts policy development.
    To explore evolving technologies, global issues, ethical questions, and leadership practices as they relate to nonprofit arts.
    To guide students to successful completion of an individual investigation or applied thesis research project as a culminating experience.


Last Updated: 8/1/19