Rochester Institute of Technology

Academic Program Overviews

Student Skills & Capabilities, Salary Data, Career Information 

Fine Arts Studio MFA

Program Overview

The School of Art educates students to be fine artists who contribute to their professions, communicate effectively within their disciplines, have a lifelong attitude of inquiry, and make a positive impact on society. The School of Art fulfills this mission through its nationally recognized programs. We promote an innovative educational community that balances expression, imaginative problem solving, aesthetic understanding, critical thinking, and creativity within a studio environment. Gallery r, an art gallery in downtown Rochester, operated by Sunny of Art students, solidifies the learning experience by bringing the work of our students to the greater Rochester community.

The educational objectives of the School of Art are to encourage imagination, creative ability, and artistic discrimination; develop the skills essential for professional competence; relate the various arts and help students find the means to enjoy them; and incorporate studies in the College of Liberal Arts for social and cultural growth, inspiring students to make maximum contributions as creative artists and citizens.  

Degrees Awarded

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts
  • Master of Fine Arts

Enrollment

  • Approximately 90 students

Cooperative Education & Experiential Education Component

  • Cooperative education, internships, or freelance work is optional and encouraged

Salary Information

Co-op:                 Insufficient Data
BFA/MFA:            Insufficient Data

Student Skills & Capabilities

  • Educated to pursue successful careers as artists.
  •  Drawing two- and three-dimensional design and creative sources.
  •  Fine Arts Studio emphasizes painting,
  • printmaking, sculpture and new forms. 
  •  Blending of tradition with contemporary artistic vision and practice. 
  •  Understanding of the historical development of the arts.
  •  Students have the opportunity to select electives that enhance their studies or allow them to pursue an area of personal or professional interest. Electives are available in the following areas: Graphic Design, Illustration, Graphic Visualization, Industrial Design, Interior Design, Fine Arts Studio, Environmental Design, Ceramics, Glass, Metals, Textiles, Woodworking, Introduction to Filmmaking, Still Photography, and Imaging Technology

Equipment & Facilities

The college provides several art production studios and digital labs for students in all programs. The computer lab facilities offer the latest equipment software and support devices, as well as immediate access for students. Fine Arts Studio, Illustration and Medical Illustration offer individual studio spaces in various locations to junior and senior level students
who request them. All of the School of Art classrooms are designed for the specialized needs of each degree program.
 
The Bevier Gallery features the work of contemporary and historical artists, illustrators, craftsmen, graphic artists, faculty, and students. Wallace Library houses an extensive art collection and serves as a comprehensive resource for reference and research.
 
Supported by RIT, Gallery r is an off-campus student managed art gallery that is administered by the School of Art of the College of Imaging Arts & Sciences. Gallery r actively educates and encourages.
 
viewers to examine the relevance of art and cultural exposure in their own lives. The gallery serves as an educational laboratory site and visual arts venue for all RIT College of Imaging Arts and Sciences students.

Nature of Work

Craft and fine artists use a variety of materials and techniques to create art for sale and exhibition. Craft artists create handmade objects, such as pottery, glassware, textiles or other objects that are designed to be functional. Fine artists, including painters, sculptors, printmakers and illustrators, create original works of art for their aesthetic value, rather than for a functional one. (OOH, 2013)

Training / Qualifications

Formal schooling beyond a high school diploma is rarely required for craft and fine artists. However, it is difficult to gain adequate artistic skills without some formal education in the fine arts.  Many artists pursue postsecondary education and take classes or earn degrees that can improve their skills and job prospects.  A bachelor's and/or master's degrees in fine arts is an excellent way to gain this training.  A certificate in an art-related specialty is another way to gain artistic skills.

Job Outlook

Employment of craft and fine artists is projected to grow 3 percent from 2012 to 2022, slower than the average for all occupations, according to the U. S.Department of Labor.  Employment and salaries for positions in these areas can be highly variable and dependent upon geographic location, economy, decrease in charitable giving, increased use of multimedia forms, and online sales.
 
RIT Fine Arts students are encouraged to gain experiences that will increase their opportunities in art related fields.  In addition to their required studio art classes, they may take courses in other art disciplines, in management or entrepreneurship, in digital media, or museum studies.  Students may also choose to work in one of our RIT galleries or to do a coop or internship with an employer that supports their career aspirations.  Students are supported in the development of a portfolio to showcase their work to potential employers.  Each year a Creative Arts Industry Day is held on campus to support the career aspirations of our students.

Job Titles

Potential Job Titles:
Fine artist, studio artist, sculptor, art teacher, photographer, gallery owner/assistant, website coordinator/art gallery, art auctioneer, advertising director, mural artist, caricaturist, art buyer, print maker, greeting card artist, art exhibit coordinator, silkscreen artist, exhibit designer, museum curator, book/magazine illustrator, custom printer, retoucher, art director (book, editorial), creative director, courtroom artist.

Significant Points

  • 62% of artists are self-employed, according to the U. S. Department of Labor
  • More employment opportunities exist in the larger markets of metropolitan areas
  • Gain valuable experience by volunteering, internships, part-time and summer jobs, and apprenticeships
  • Consider developing skills in business management, computers, marketing, and other related areas to increase marketability
  • A career in the arts takes talent, dedication, patience, flexibility, and some luck
  • Save artwork for a strong portfolio

Selected Employer Hiring Partners

Potential Employers:
Art museums (university, public and  private), galleries, archives, art studios, school and community programs, colleges and universities, auction houses,  historical societies, private/local arts councils, advertising agencies, community college, public school district, art gallery, self-employed.

Contact Us

We appreciate your interest in hiring RIT co-op, graduating students or alumni. We will make every effort to make your recruiting endeavor a success. Call our office and ask to speak with Morgan Faas, the career services coordinator who works with the Fine Arts Studio program. For your convenience, you can access information and services through our web site at http://www.rit.edu/recruit.

Morgan Faas, Career Services Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,  585.475.5469

Rochester Institute of Technology . Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
Bausch & Lomb Center
57 Lomb Memorial Drive . Rochester NY  14623-5603
585.475.2301

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