College of Charleston SCHOOL OF THE ARTS

Experts in Arts Management/Arts Entrepreneurship to Join Faculty and to Present Public Lectures

As one of the few undergraduate studies of its kind in the Southeast, the arts management program at the College of Charleston School of the Arts is one of the fastest growing majors on campus. The program prepares its students for careers in supporting the work of performing, visual and media artists. The curriculum includes studies in arts presenting, gallery management, fund raising and grant writing, programming and event planning, arts marketing, music industry, volunteerism and board development, financial management, and arts policy. To further enhance the program, the Director of Arts Management, Dr. Karen Chandler, and the faculty of the program announce the academic appointments of Dr. Katherine (Kate) Keeney and Dr. Jason C. White, who will join the faculty this fall.

Keeney and White will give talks about their research and work in arts management and arts entrepreneurship – Keeney will speak about the importance of understanding arts organizations as a complex ecosystem supported by the nonprofit, private, and public sectors, and White will propose and discuss a framework for researching and analyzing the state of entrepreneurship across the South Carolina arts sector. The lecture/event on Saturday, May 28 will be an opportunity for local and statewide arts and business leaders to meet the new faculty members, and will take place at 11:30 a.m. in room 309 of the Simons Center for the Arts, 54 Saint Philip St.


Keeney’s research interests bridge arts management and public policy and management scholarship with a specific focus on arts policy, organizations, and nonprofit management. She is both a scholar and an experienced administrator in the arts and higher education administration settings. Keeney has published in The Journal of Arts Management, Law, and Society, and has co-authored work with Pam Korza, co-director of Animating Democracy. She has presented related research at many annual conferences of public administration and arts management, is a reviewer for the Journal of Nonprofit Management and Leadership, and serves on the research committee for the Association of Arts Administration Educators (AAAE). Over the past two years, she has assisted in the creation of a new master’s degree in nonprofit organization for Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs.

As a project director at Virginia Tech, Keeney has been at the center of several high-level, university-wide initiatives, including the construction of the $100 million Moss Arts Center. She also has served as the Assistant Production Manager for the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and has held research and contract positions with Americans for the Arts and the Cathedral Choral Society in Washington, D.C.

Keeney holds a Ph.D. in Public Administration and Public Affairs from Virginia Tech, a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Arts Management from American University, and a Bachelor of Music (BM) in viola performance from James Madison University. She has taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in arts management and nonprofit financial management at Virginia Tech.

KEENEY’S LECTURE:  Drawing from her research in public administration, Keeney will speak about the importance of understanding arts organizations as a complex ecosystem supported by the nonprofit, private, and public sectors. She explores why it is not enough to prepare the next generation of arts organization leaders; instead we must integrate the arts into different facets of society, and work across sectors to achieve a robust arts field that is broadly defined. Keeney’s talk builds on her dissertation work—an investigation of the role of public higher education institutions in state-level arts policy. Specifically, she argues that performing arts centers on college campuses are significant contributors to the state arts landscape, but that this position is not accurately reflected in our understanding of public support for the arts and culture.   



With over twenty years of experience as a professional actor and independent theatre producer, White is well aware of the unique challenges and barriers that many artists, administrators and technical creative workers face when attempting to produce, exhibit, distribute, sustain and legitimize works of art. Through a combination of research, teaching and service, he will work with students to address arts management issues, co-identify solutions to common challenges in art fields, and co-develop new opportunity structures in arts sectors. In doing so, students will be better prepared for the practice of arts management and arts entrepreneurship.

Recently at The Ohio State University, White completed his dissertation research study, The State of Entrepreneurship Across the Ohio Arts Sector. He is also a published author in the Journal of Arts Entrepreneurship EducationArtivate: A Journal of Entrepreneurship in the Arts, and Arts Education Policy Review. In addition, White is a founding member of the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Education (SAEE), and serves as an Assistant Editor for the Journal of Arts Entrepreneurship Research and as an Assistant Editor for the Journal of Arts Entrepreneurship Education. Prior to receiving his Ph.D. in Arts Administration, Education and Policy from The Ohio State University, White attended The University of Akron, obtaining both a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Arts Administration, and a Master in Education (M.Ed.) degree in Assessment and Evaluation.  He received a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Acting from the California Institute of the Arts. 

WHITE’S LECTURE:  White’s lecture is titled “The State of Entrepreneurship Across the Arts Sector.”  His talk will focus on findings from his doctoral dissertation on arts entrepreneurship where he conducted surveys and interviews with owners and founders of 115 arts organizations in Ohio to determine demographic information, shared characteristics and experiences, and venture trends over the last fifteen years within distinct arts fields. Through research at the College of Charleston, White intends to utilize his framework to better understand the nature of both arts entrepreneurship and arts entrepreneurs across the South Carolina arts sector.



Jonathan Katz, former CEO of the National Assembly of State Art Agencies, visited the College’s campus during the spring 2014 semester and expressed his opinion of the Arts Management Program as “one of the best, if not the best in the nation…this program is outstanding!  …I have never seen another undergraduate program as impressive, and I congratulate the Arts Management faculty, staff and students on their tremendous success.”

Who should consider the major or minor in arts management? Students who are interested in Art History, Studio Art, Theatre, Dance and Music who wish to combine work in an artistic discipline with management and administrative skills are good candidates, as well as artists who wish to combine their artistic work with management and administrative skills. Additionally students interested in Business, Economics, and Communications who wish to broaden their career choices may be interested in a minor or double major. Finally managers, employees, directors and volunteers currently working with arts and cultural organizations who wish to become more effective at managing those organizations, are good candidates for our undergraduate or graduate offerings in arts management. For more information on the program offerings of the Arts Management Program and for details on the May 28th public lectures of Drs. Keeney and White, visit or call (843) 953-6301.