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Soliciting advise: How can I make a decision?


poppyos
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Hey:

I was hoping to get some help... I am interested in getting my Masters in Art History, and I am not sure if that is the right program for me.  Is it possible for people to comment, to give me some advice? If it works better for you, you can message me through the blog/ forum.  I have my Bachelors in Women's Studies, with minors in Philosophy and Sociology, and I am hoping to start a career as a Curator.  I am not sure what that all entails, but I basically want to work in a Museum and teach people about art, that has some type of political significance, specifically art that pertains to feminism and gender issues.  I not only want to teach people about the art (in a Museum setting), but I also want to understand the art, and its historical context.  It would be a bonus if I can fix or restore the art as well.. Unless that is a separate career.  All useful advice is appreciated.  I am hoping to move to Boston, MA (Boston University), to get the degree - they have Museums out there as well, and New York is out of my price range in terms of the cost of living.  I do not want to move to Philadelphia, since the only good school", that I am aware of out there is University of Philadelphia, and I do not have the GPA or interest in going to an Ivy League school.

 

Thank you! :D

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@poppyos It sounds like you could really benefit from an internship or shadowing experience in a museum. That would give you the ability to see inside the heart of a museum and really see what is the best fit for you. 

Also, to stick up for Philadelphia: 

  • Moore College of Art & Design
  • Tyler School of Art (Temple)
  • Westphal College of Media Arts & Design (Drexel University)
  • Philadelphia Academy of the Fine Arts
  • The University of the Arts

...to name a few beyond UPenn that have programs in museum studies specifically. I certainly don't know all of them as I'm not an artist. My SO is. Some of his colleagues teach courses at local art colleges. We have a huge Mural Arts , a shocking amount of museums, and a strong contemporary art culture in general.

I'm not sure if you've looked into any of these programs, but I know several of them are considered strong universities and/or programs in general. 

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@_kita: Thank you for responding.  I know about Temple and Drexel, but I wanted to go to a University that was more known for "The Arts" if that makes sense - prestigious in its own right, without it being an Ivy League to be apart of the elitist culture.  I have not heard of Moore College, or the University of The Arts, and the only school that I found online that met my criteria so far is Boston University.  I guess to clarify, the reason why I am looking to other areas outside of Philadelphia, is that I want to live in Brooklyn, and cannot afford it, so New York City - lite cities are where I am trying to go; from my understanding, those areas are: Boston and Philadelphia.  I have visited Philadelphia several times, and I liked it when I visited it, but since I couldn't find any schools that fit that criteria, that city was out of the list of options.  Where does your husband teach? I'm sorry, significant other? You can PM me, if you do not feel comfortable posting it in a public setting, and if you don't feel comfortable sending me a private message, you can just give me vague information on here.  I cannot paint or draw or sculpt, which is frustrating, because I really would like to know how to paint, so programs that I am interested in, would have to have that stipulation - applicants are not required to know how to paint, draw, sculpt, photograph, upon admission.  Do you know if there is the requirement of specializing in a specific genera of Art, to get a Masters in Art History? I cannot figure out what genera I would like to focus on, since I really want to do or learn about, feminist art, that does not have a specific time period.  

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To clarify, my significant other is a philly artist. He has several Philly artist colleagues who teach (I say colleagues because they exhibit together and are in a common critique group). One of his collegues, Maria Teicher, is an instructor at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

As for the ranking bit... Temple is ranked #15 for fine arts - which is technically higher than UPenn's ranking (#33). University of Arts is in the top 100; where as Moore, Academy of the Fine Arts, and Drexel are a bit over the top #100 ranking. I'm not sure why that is exactly, but maybe because bigger name universities have more access to internships, fellowships, etc. through the actual museums.

I did a brief search last night and the universities I sent you either have grad in Art History or Museum Studies specifically. As I'm not an artist, I really wouldn't know what would be a "good program" to go with (outside what the critique group tells me!).

Just so you know, I'm not pushing you to go to Philadelphia. I just wanted you to be aware that your search parameters are missing some large gaps in it for prestige, resources, etc. You may want to look across the nation again to make sure you didn't miss the perfect program.

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  • 4 months later...
On 9/27/2017 at 12:09 PM, _kita said:

To clarify, my significant other is a philly artist. He has several Philly artist colleagues who teach (I say colleagues because they exhibit together and are in a common critique group). One of his collegues, Maria Teicher, is an instructor at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

As for the ranking bit... Temple is ranked #15 for fine arts - which is technically higher than UPenn's ranking (#33). University of Arts is in the top 100; where as Moore, Academy of the Fine Arts, and Drexel are a bit over the top #100 ranking. I'm not sure why that is exactly, but maybe because bigger name universities have more access to internships, fellowships, etc. through the actual museums.

I did a brief search last night and the universities I sent you either have grad in Art History or Museum Studies specifically. As I'm not an artist, I really wouldn't know what would be a "good program" to go with (outside what the critique group tells me!).

Just so you know, I'm not pushing you to go to Philadelphia. I just wanted you to be aware that your search parameters are missing some large gaps in it for prestige, resources, etc. You may want to look across the nation again to make sure you didn't miss the perfect program.

A good graduate program, is important, but the affordability is something that matters most.  I will be paying for this myself, and relying on grants, which means that I have to have a good budget.  U Penn is far out of my league in terms of GPA requirement, and admittance rate.  I considered Boston University since it was a good school, and Boston is affordable.  I've only visited, but it seems okay.  I am not really looking forward to the Harvard crowd though.  I don't really want to be surrounded by Ivy League society.  Most people do not have this holier than though persona, but there is this atmosphere of elite that I am afraid of becoming.  Not the violent type, those are few in number and don't understand the environment they wish to become.  But the over achiever working for the man type.  Is what I want to avoid in my fragile state of mind.  It is not that they are bad people, I just don't think it is fair and excludes a lot of people who wouldn't have access.  

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