Gyo Obata Fellowship for Diversity in Nonprofit Arts Administration

The Regional Arts Commission (RAC) is pleased to introduce the Gyo Obata Fellowship, a new program for undergraduate students pursuing careers in arts management. With major funding provided by the Gateway Foundation, the program will address the need for a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable local nonprofit arts and culture sector.

The Gyo Obata Fellowship is a substantive, full-time, summer work opportunity for college undergraduates from backgrounds that have been traditionally underrepresented in the arts. The ten-week paid summer fellowship program will provide a minimum of ten college students working towards careers in arts administration with a hands-on introduction to arts nonprofits in St. Louis City and County.

The program will match undergraduate students from underrepresented backgrounds with energetic and motivated host nonprofit arts organizations. The program is intended to be mutually beneficial, providing arts organizations with financially subsidized staff to support ongoing operations or address the needs of special projects during the summer months.

Fellowship Projects

The ideal fellowships are those that have a mutually beneficial impact for hosting organization and a positive learning experience for the student. The Gyo Obata Fellowship will offer eligible students experience in key areas of arts management, such as fundraising, financial management, marketing, or programming. In considering what makes a meaningful fellow project, host organizations will consider projects, duties, or other activities that are important to their organization while assisting the fellow in developing practical, work-related skills. Matches between fellows and host organizations are based on the merits of your proposed project, and the talents and interests of fellow applicants.

Host Requirements and Eligibility

To host a fellow, applicants must fulfill the following criteria:

  • Be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization located in St. Louis City and County
    • Organizations can include museums, visual arts organizations, performing, presenting (including film and media organizations with a presenting program), arts service and literary arts organizations that are not part of a college or university.
  • Have a budget with an annual operating income of $100,000 or more
  • Have a minimum of one full-time staff member
  • Have a dedicated and accessible office space with furniture and adequate business machines, such as computers, copy machines, etc.
  • Does not receive funding from the Zoo Museum District (ZMD)

Successful candidates also should be able to demonstrate:

  • A commitment to cultural equity in the arts
  • A proposed arts management project that is challenging and substantive and not only clerical in nature
  • A positive and supportive working and learning environment

Download the Gyo Obata Fellowship Guidelines (PDF).

Apply to be a nonprofit arts organization host. Applications due January 15, 2019.

Applications for undergraduate students interested in the fellowship will open in January 2019. If you are an interested undergrad, please register for email notifications regarding this fellowship only.