Hardly Starving, Most Arts Grads Are Working
And 41% are even professional artists
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted May 4, 2011 9:04 AM CDT
Go ahead, be a theater major.   (©juliejordanscott)
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(Newser) – Good news: The poetry and theater majors of the world are not leading lives as starving artists, at least not according to a new survey of arts graduates. USA Today reports on the national survey of some 13,581 alumni of 154 arts programs who studied everything from dance to fine arts to design and graduated in 1990, 1995, 2000, or between 2005 and 2009. Of those who say they want to work, 92% are indeed working—41% as professional artists (another 16% report having worked as a professional artist in the past).

While that 41% may seem low, those working as arts teachers or arts administrators were not considered a "professional artist." But it's not all champagne and roses: Though they're not starving, few said they were pleased with their income (ranging from 0% of craft artists to 29% of art directors). And the survey found that most of those who are working as artists have two jobs—though in another stereotype-busting finding, just 3% work in food services. Click for more findings.