Arts Internship Program (for Students)

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the LA County Arts Internship Program?

The LA County Arts Internship Program supports and strengthens the cultural sector of LA County by providing access to high-quality opportunities for college students of all backgrounds to gain experience, understanding, and transferrable skills relevant to careers in the arts, the creative economy, and engagement in public life.

How does the program work?

The Arts Commission provides grants to nonprofit performing, presenting, and literary organizations to host college students for 400 hours of paid work between June and August. The earliest that interns can start their 2019 internships is Saturday, June 1, and the latest is Monday, June 17. Internships end no later than Sunday, August 25.

Each participating host organization determines the exact start date and end date of the internship, as well as the work schedule. In addition to working at their host organizations, students participate in education events and peer group activities coordinated by the Arts Commission.

In the summer of 2019, approximately 178 positions will be available for students throughout LA County. A list of available positions will be posted in March 2019. In the meantime, students are encouraged to review the list of 2018 positions to get a sense of the range of positions typically available.

For more information about past interns' experiences, you can also read our 2018 Arts Internship Program Final Report, which includes a summary and evaluation from the perspectives of both interns and supervisors.

What about the visual arts?

Internships in museums and visual arts organizations are provided every summer through the Getty Foundation’s Multicultural Undergraduate Internship Program.

Are these positions paid?

Yes. In summer 2019 all students will be paid $5,700 ($14.25/hour, or $570/week for a 40-hour week) for their 400-hour long internships. Please note: students are selected and paid directly by their host organizations, not by the Arts Commission.

So students have to be in college to participate? Are there any other eligibility requirements?

Yes, for example, students must either live in or attend college in Los Angeles County. Please review the student eligibility guidelines in full.

I’m not majoring in the arts. Is this program right for me?

This program is meant to develop transferrable skills applicable to arts careers as well as the broader creative economy. Students are not required to have prior background or experience in the arts—in fact, many students have participated as non-arts majors! However, each organization creates its own job description, so it is important to read each description to find positions that may be suited to your skills and interests.

The internships run from June to August, but I’m planning a vacation in July. Can I still participate?

Due to the nature of the program, students must be able to fulfill 400 hours over the course of twelve weeks at their host organization, as well as attend required educational events.

I’m in high school/graduate school/graduated last year and looking for my next step/in the middle of a career change and I want an internship. What should I do?

At this time, the LA County Arts Internship Program is only open to eligible community college and undergraduate students. We recommend the Arts for LA Jobs Forum as well as the LA Culture Net listserv for other internship or job opportunities that may work for you.

How do I apply?

Check our application page at the end of March 2019 for a list of available positions for the following summer. Afterwards, apply directly to the organizations that interest you. We recommend applying early and applying to more than one organization.

Do you have any tips for applying?
  • Prepare your cover letter and resume in advance so that you can begin to tailor your materials as soon as the positions are posted.
  • Do NOT submit the same cover letter and resume to each organization.
  • Make sure your materials are error free;
  • Have them reviewed by a friend or professor beforehand.
  • Do your research about the organizations that interest you so that you can make the best case for why you’re a good candidate.
  • And be sure to read this helpful blog post by an Arts Internship Program alumn that is full of other good things to consider!
I still have questions! What should I do?

Contact Talia Gibas, Professional Development Programs Manager, or Martín Hernandez, Professional Development Programs Associate.