Universities Aim To Change ‘Starving Artist’ To ‘Working Artist’Image of

Universities Aim To Change ‘Starving Artist’ To ‘Working Artist’

Students in Colorado State University's LEAP program argue legal issues, including copyright infringement, in a recent Law and the Arts class. Photo by Stacy Nick KUNC

Students in Colorado State University’s LEAP program argue legal issues, including copyright infringement, in a recent Law and the Arts class. Photo by Stacy Nick KUNC

Excerpt from KUNC story by Stacy Nick

Patrick Weseman already has two bachelor’s degrees; one in math and one in music. After graduation though, Weseman realized he didn’t really want to be a mathematician – or a musician for that matter.

“I wanted to start thinking of my life a little more practically,” he said.

That desire brought him back to school and into a program mixing the arts and practical business sense. These entrepreneurial programs are preparing the folks who will work both in front of, and behind, the curtain.

Now planning on going into festival management, Weseman was part of Colorado State University’s first graduating class from its new LEAP (Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Arts Advocacy, and the Public) Institute for the Arts.

“It’s not necessarily people that can’t hack it as a musician, or as a painter, or potter, whatever it is they want to do,” said Katie Rothstein, associate director of the LEAP program. “It’s people who actually have a desire to help other people make their art. And to help their communities make art better.”

Entrepreneurial arts degrees have been around at East Coast schools for years, but they’re just taking off in Colorado. CSU’s program is only two years old.

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