Student Spotlight: Molly McDonald

Molly McDonald (2) (1)Molly McDonald is a 2014 graduate of Wake Forest University, where she studied English and Dance. Prior to entering the Arts Administration program, she held internships with Victoria Theatre Association, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Winston-Salem Symphony, Boston Ballet School, and Dayton Performing Arts Alliance. Additionally, she has choreographed for Gem City Ballet and Wake Forest University Dance Company. Molly is interested in marketing and development positions in dance companies.

What attracted you to the Arts Administration Program at Teachers College, Columbia University? This program is the perfect combination of excellent academics and a location in a city brimming with arts opportunities. I wanted to take advantage of the program’s connection with Columbia Business School, to learn alongside MBA students with a business and numbers-driven mindset, while also taking courses within the program at Teachers College that operates with an arts and non-profit focus. One of my concerns about entering graduate school immediately after completing my undergraduate degree was that I would simply learn more theory without hands-on work experience, but this program encourages students to intern, volunteer, and continuously connect with arts organizations in New York City. I have always wanted to work for a dance company, and no other city has more dance-related opportunities and connections.

How are your studies helping to advance your career goals? The program has truly challenged me to think critically and creatively about the future of dance. I love how our coursework gives us opportunities to develop innovative ideas focused on programming, marketing, and audience engagement, all areas critical to the future of the arts. My studies within the program are pushing me to become a forward-thinking leader in a dance organization with the ability to create big ideas and execute them in an organized and logical way.