NATION’S LARGEST PAID SUMMER ARTS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM OPENS FOR LA COUNTY COLLEGE STUDENTS
Program Expands Creative Career Opportunities and Learning
LA County’s long-running creative workforce development program, the LA County Arts Internship Program (AIP), will provide 228 university and community college students with paid on-the-job experience in the arts at over 140 nonprofit organizations starting this summer. Applications for interested students are now open.
The AIP is the largest paid summer internship program in the US. Now in its 22nd year, more than 2,500 students have entered the LA County arts and culture field through AIP, which places interns in nonprofit performing, presenting, literary, arts education, and municipal arts organizations. Its companion program, the Getty Marrow Undergraduate Internship Program, provides internships with museums and visual arts organizations.
Students build their professional skills and connections while completing projects in education, marketing, graphic design, fundraising, production, and more. Arts organizations, which range in budget size and include nonprofits focusing on artistic disciplines ranging from theater to dance, multimedia, film, and social justice through the arts, host internships with meaningful work-based learning opportunities. To support the program, Arts and Culture provides funding to selected arts organization hosts for paid internships and administrative support, professional development for those supervising interns, an arts summit, and peer learning events for interns.
"As Los Angeles County’s creative economy begins to rebound from COVID-19 impacts, we need to stay committed to sustainable recovery programs and creative workforce development initiatives. The Arts Internship Program checks both boxes. We are supporting our arts and culture organizations as they get their feet back under them, and at the same time, we are investing and nurturing our next generations of artists and cultural leaders," said Holly J. Mitchell, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair.
"For over 20 years, the Arts Internship Program has built career pathways for diverse young people including many who face barriers to creative jobs in LA County. The program connects students to salaries, real-world experience and job skills, provides an inside understanding of the arts ecosystem, and expands access with a cultural equity and inclusion lens. The program’s impacts last well beyond the summer—we celebrate the many alumni who have gone on to incredible careers here in LA and around the world, expanding representation as they thrive in the creative sector," said LA County Department of Arts and Culture Director Kristin Sakoda.
Approved as one of the five initial recommendations from the Cultural Equity and Inclusion Initiative funded by the Board of Supervisors in 2017, the program has expanded each subsequent year, both increasing the number of internships available and reserving at least 28 positions for community college students. In the last three years the proportion of participation from community college students has more than quadrupled.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the program timeline has been extended to allow for more flexibility for both interns and work sites. Additionally, part time and remote flexibility will be available. Organizations set the start and end dates of their positions, but all students must complete their 400 paid hours between June 1, 2022 and March 1, 2023.
In addition to the on-the-job experience they acquire as Arts Interns, participants take part in educational and networking activities including opportunities to meet in Peer Groups curated by leaders in the arts and culture field. These educational components are supported by The Getty Foundation, which supports internships at museums and visual arts organizations through its Getty Marrow Undergraduate Internship Program, a companion program to the Department of Arts and Culture’s program.
Applications for the program are now open. Any current undergraduate students, as well as students graduating between May 1 - December 1 are eligible to apply. All applicants must be currently enrolled in a community college or four-year university. Applicants must also be residents of or attending schools that are located in Los Angeles County, and they cannot be previous participants of the Program. Eligible students of diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
Students who wish to apply may do so by identifying the opportunities they are interested in at www.lacountyarts.org/internships, and applying directly to those host organizations. Positions will be launched at the beginning of each month starting in April through July of 2022. Interested students are encouraged to continue checking our website for the most up to date and available positions.