With the costs of higher education increasing, one would think that art school enrollment statistics would show a decline. Since many perceive careers in the arts as not being as lucrative as in fields such as medicine, engineering, or computers, it would follow that over time there would be an overall decrease in art program enrollment. However, it’s quite the contrary. Art school enrollment statistics actually show that seeking higher education in an artistic field is as desirable as ever.
Perhaps the reason lies in our increasing appreciation of creativity as a business. These days, many see a “creative culture” developing, which treats the artistically inclined more as entrepreneurs than as “starving artists.” Today, it is accepted that an artist can become a viable business enterprise. New social media such as Twitter and Facebook allow many art professionals to take the marketing of their product out of the sometimes elitist gallery setting and into their own hands.
The stable trend in art school enrollment statistics shows that the public interest in the romance of art careers is not waning. According to Judith Aaron, who helps handles admissions at the Pratt Institute in New York, the school has seen admission rates steadily drop for nine years as more applicants apply each year. The Pratt Institute is not the only art school that is seeing so many applications—other art schools report a steady rise in applicants and a consistent interest in the curriculums offered.
With art school enrollment statistics like these, it may be wise to put your best foot forward when applying, because the competition is intense. However, with the new “take charge” entrepreneurial outlook for today’s artists, it appears that, with a bit of endurance, it may very well be worth it to fight for that coveted seat at your favorite art school.