Video Credit: Enrique Toledo
Attending FSU was a dream that I never thought would be possible growing up as a child in south Georgia. After completing my MBA at FSU in 2008, I decided to go back and get my doctorate in Arts Administration.
Motivation to pursue graduate degree?
Working in higher education, I realized all of my mentors had terminal degrees. Several of my mentors expressed how pursuing my doctorate would later be beneficial in my career within higher education administration.
Importance of research and work
My research is based on entrepreneurship in the arts. As a musician having a business background, I understood that there is a gap there. Furthermore, a common misconception is that if you are an artist, you are probably a starving artist. I want to debunk this myth and offer a different way of thinking through the display of successful artists. The entrepreneurial spirit has been the foundation of this country and an expression of the American Dream. I believe my research merges business and art to create a beautiful collaboration where we all win. The beauty of artistic endeavors colliding with business is a work of art in itself. Some artists see pursuing profit as a negative stigma, but I see it as a necessity for survival, even within the nonprofit sector.
I hope to one day work in university administration and teach business courses to artists. I always found it fascinating that the president of my undergraduate university, Valdosta State University, was an artist.
Advice for prospective graduate students
Tenacity is a necessity. Graduate school is challenging and requires sacrifices. Keep your eyes on the prize.
Accomplishments during graduate career
In 2017, I presented on the "Unique Funding Structures of the Arts in Florida" at the Social Theory, Politics and the Arts Conference and co-authored an article in the journal Reflective Practice titled "'We’ve Shared a Lifetime With One Another': Using Reflective Visual/Verbal Journals to Develop Graduate Student Relationships."