Students are bound to face an artless world

Allison Skiple, Guest Writer

Visit any school and walk down the fine arts hallway; there is music being played, children performing and art being made. Choir, band, orchestra, theatre, dance and art programs are now left to fend for themselves financially. This leads aspiring artists to become discouraged about pursuing a career in the fine arts. Fine arts programs all across the U.S. should be respected just as much as any other department.  It’s not asking too much.

Statistically, students involved in a fine art do better in school in many aspects. Children learn how to work diligently both on their own and in a group. Their efforts at home and at school affect their whole group. Students learn how to connect and affect others with the art that they make.

As a student heavily involved in the fine arts, I know how the arts can change a person as they truly changed my life; they have built up my confidence and changed my perspective. I would be questioning my purpose because I wouldn’t have anything to do or anything to live for. Why should dedicated artists have to suffer the cut?

If colleges offer majors in the fine arts, then why don’t they offer more scholarships? Fine arts improve confidence and public speaking which is crucial in any job. It might not be as easy to acquire a job, but people in the arts tend to be more hardworking then a person who is not. According to Princeton University in 2001 there were 2.5 million people in a fine art profession out of 7.1 million employed workers as recorded by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. There are ample jobs for a person wanting to pursue a career in the fine arts.

Some argue that arts are a waste of time because they can’t get you anywhere in life. Yes, stereotypically, more athletes get scholarships than artists of any field. USA Today reports the average sports scholarship is about $10,000 while a fine arts scholarship for music majors found on a website dedicated to music scholarships is  on average $1,000 to $1,200. Being the star athlete in comparison is more important than being the principal actor in a show. Both an athlete and a musician have to work incredibly hard to get to where they are, so why are people saying that one is better than the other? A professional athlete has to work only in the prime of their body while artists, actors, dancers and musicians have to work for life.

We, as a country, can learn to put the fine arts higher up on our lists. We need to support local fine art programs of all sorts and plug them into schools. Professionals try their best to inspire up-and-coming artists, but we need the support from the school to show children that they can succeed in doing what they love. Schools should put money where it is deserved and give equal credit to athletes and artists. “The ‘earth’ without ‘art’ is just eh.”