2017 Katherine Dunham Internship

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The Regional Arts Commission of St Louis (RAC) is proud to offer the Katherine Dunham Internship, a 16-week, learning opportunity designed to prepare students who have been historically under-represented in the field of arts administration for careers in the nonprofit arts and culture sector. Named in honor of African American dancer, choreographer and social activist Katherine Dunham, the internship is intended to increase the diversity of professionals working within museums, theatres, dance companies and other arts organizations throughout the region and beyond.

The internship, established in 2011 by St Louis arts supporters Sara and Jack Burke, is funded in partnership with RAC where the internship is based. It provides experience in arts administration, a $6,000 stipend, and other forms of personal and professional enrichment opportunities including, complimentary tickets to local arts and culture events; networking with artists, cultural leaders and potential mentors; and, access to workshops and training in related fields, such as marketing, grant writing, and program planning.

Inspired by Dunham’s history of activism, the internship also has a special emphasis in community art, a practice that utilizes art and culture as a tool for social change and community development. The intern will engage with all aspects of RAC’s programs, but will train primarily within the Artist and Community Initiatives Department during the 16-week tenure.

About the Regional Arts Commission
The Regional Arts Commission is at the forefront of efforts to transform St Louis into a more vibrant, creative and economically thriving community by elevating the vitality, value and visibility of the arts. It is the largest annual funder of nonprofit arts in the region, and since its inception in 1985, RAC has awarded more than 6,900 grants totaling over $97 million to support nonprofit arts, individual artists, cultural organizations and programs.


To apply for the Katherine Dunham Internship, please complete the online application at racstl.org/about-rac/internships and include the following information:

• A cover letter summarizing your educational and demographic background and expressing your interest in the internship;
• A résumé outlining your education, work and extracurricular experience;
• A signed and dated letter of reference from a professor, academic advisor or a recent employer that includes the writer’s reflections on your qualities, characteristics and suitability for the internship experience;
• A one-page, single-spaced essay answering the following questions: “Why are you interested in arts administration and/or community arts? How will this internship help you achieve your career goals? What aspects of Katherine Dunham’s legacy do you find personally inspirational?”

*All attachments submitted through the online application must be in a PDF file format.


Applicants to the Katherine Dunham Internship must meet the following qualifications:
• Undergraduate senior, graduate level student or recent graduate (1-3 years) from an under-represented demographic group;
• Educational background in any academic area, including but not limited to the arts (e.g., liberal arts and humanities, social work, nonprofit management, marketing and communications, etc.);
• Expressed interest in pursuing a career in arts administration, primarily within the nonprofit arena (arts funding or arts service agencies, dance companies, museums, theaters, performing arts or community cultural centers, etc.)
• Expressed interest in social justice and the role the arts can play in bringing people together to solve community problems;
• Ability to work 20-24 hours per week between January and May during normal RAC business hours, Monday – Friday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm;
• Willing to spend approximately 2-5 additional hours per week outside of normal business hours on extracurricular activities, such as attending arts and culture events, professional networking or other RAC activities.
The selection process considers eligible candidates from the St Louis metropolitan area.

How To Apply

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