Many counties host institutions providing professional (post-secondary) arts training. Two indicators examine that aspect of the arts, one looking at the number of arts degrees awarded in counties around the country, and the second at the kinds of arts training institutions that are in each county.

Higher education provides many avenues for interaction with community arts and culture. One is the campus as an arts and culture destination for local arts audiences. Secondly, arts students in a community are especially likely to consume and participate in arts and culture activities of-campus. A third is through the community life of the faculty, who may have studios or be part of local ensembles. All these together make campuses with arts programs centers of activity that both radiate into the community, and invite the community in.

These indicators can help understand the ways in which “town and gown” relate to each other around issues of arts and culture. The number of arts students and the presence of recognized arts education institutions can be a part of developing and promoting the image of a particular community. Community leaders can seek ways to improve their interactions with cultural life on campus.



Fast Facts from the Arts Index

The nonprofit arts grow – despite a recession!

The number of nonprofit arts organizations has grown annually, reaching 113,000 in 2010. In the past decade, nonprofit arts organizations grew 49% (76,000 to 113,000), a greater rate than all nonprofit organizations, which grew 32% (1.2 million to 1.6 million).