Displaying items by tag: Create Success

September 25 2023

First-year MAP advising

First-Year College of Fine Arts students have received a UMail message informing them a registration hold has been placed on their account and that it is time to schedule their First-Year MAP Advising appointment. In order to register for next semester, CFA students who have a First-Year MAP hold will need to meet with a CFA Academic Advisor.  

If you have a First-Year MAP hold, you can find out how to meet with a CFA Academic Advisor hereScreenshot 2023 09 25 at 10.38.00 AM

Also, we have updated createsuccess.utah.edu!

You can now find new resources to help you thrive while you are studying at the U. 

  • Watch videos and listen to podcasts to learn how to create successful daily practices
  • Read articles about strengthening your habits 
  • Find links to apps that help you build effective habits and routines 

The CFA Academic Advising Team is looking forward to meeting with you to discuss how your first semester is going, share information about helpful resources and ways to get involved, and advise you on your next semester schedule and overall degree planning.

Published in Finer Points Blog
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Experiential learning opportunities beyond the classroom help to prepare College of Fine Arts students for the professional world. The CFA Fund provides funding for these types of transformative experiences for students in Art & Art History, Dance, Film & Media Arts, Music, and Theatre: from internships within the college and with local organizations, to competitions, festivals, masterclasses, and more. It is often in these settings that students further refine professional skill sets outside their coursework and build their networks. 

Demonstrating a strong commitment to the success of emerging arts professionals, Merit Medical Systems, Inc. is matching gifts to the CFA Fund up to $7,500 this month. This generous gift opens doors for students, and encourages others in the community to fortify experiential learning in the College of Fine Arts with double the impact. 

One student from the School of Dance can already speak to the value of her Create Success internship in the CFA. 

Modern dance major Lia Wong not only manages a full course load plus rigorous rehearsals, she has also worked alongside the Academic Advising team for the past two years helping students in New Student and Transfer Orientations.

“I have been able to better my interpersonal, presentational, communication, and teamwork skills. As interns, we are involved in the creation of ideas on how to promote student success which forced me to be confident in my own thoughts, allowed me to learn how to jump in head first into a project with not much guidance, take risks, and be okay with trial and error,” she said. “I feel like I was able to get a better sense of my own degree, the possibilities I have within that degree, and how I can better articulate the value of my degree and the arts to others.” 

"From the time of its founding in 1987, Merit Medical Systems, Inc. has worked to build and strengthen the local community by supporting andDarla Gill FAAB 2019 resized donating to the arts and other cultural programs in our State. We recognize that a city with a vibrant artistic and cultural scene encourages a society of healthier, happier, more creative, and more diverse residents, and tends to attract a high level of talent to the region. We encourage our employees and others in the community to take advantage of and support the rich culture of art and education in Utah, and we appreciate being associated with the University of Utah’s College of Fine Arts."
- Darla Gill
Co-Founder, Merit Medical Systems, Inc.
College of Fine Arts Advisory Board Member


Published in Finer Points Blog

by Rebecca Ortmann 

Ever since college first became a subject of consideration in my sixth-grade classroom, I knew that above all else, I needed to get out of Idaho.

No matter how much I tried to convince myself that maybe staying in my home state wouldn’t be so bad, I couldn’t help but feel like my potential lied somewhere beyond state lines. For the next several years of my K-12 education, I had managed to figure out that I wanted to study film, but what I truly wanted to get out of my college experience was still a blur.

It wasn’t until I went to a small art gallery in Salt Lake City that I began to seriously consider going to the University of Utah. My short experience in the gallery gave me an incredible amount of insight into the bustling local creative scene, and I felt like I belonged.

Since being accepted and enrolling at the U, my eagerness to hit the ground running this coming August has only grown. With the bounty of opportunity and new experiences that lie ahead, incoming first year students like me have so much to look forward to.

Here are my top five things that I’m eager to experience on campus this fall:

1. Events

Growing up in a mid-size farming town in southern Idaho, there wasn’t much in terms of artistically-oriented events. Which is why I am ecstatic to attend many of the on campus showcases of creativity (COVID permitting). Whether it's the Arts Bash at the beginning of fall semester, or the F&MAD Spring showcase at the end of the year, I look forward to experiencing it all in my first year at the U of U College of Fine Arts. Additionally, with Arts Pass, experiencing the arts has never been more accessible. By using only our UCard, all students can attend various performances, concerts, and even guest lectures year-round for free, or for greatly discounted prices. 

2. Opportunity

With Utah being one of the fastest growing states nationwide, new internship and career enrichment opportunities are also on the rise in Salt Lake City. Both on and off-campus, there are ways to start to gain work experience either as part of the many ambassador and mentorship programs offered at the U, or with new startups in the Salt Lake area. The wide variety of resources provided to students makes it easy to get connected, which I find very reassuring as a new student.

3. Support

When I was searching for more information about the U before applying last February, I was immediately impressed by its wide assortment of different resource centers, and helpful faculty members. Being able to have access to people that could not only help me with my academics, but also my personal life helped me know that despite the large size of campus and student population, I would still be able to receive help if I needed it. The Create Success resources make it easy to contact advisors for information on classes, and helps to get a better picture of what the undergraduate experience looks like. This kind of support allowed me to feel comfortable trusting the U for the next four years of my studies.

4. Location

University of Utah’s proximity to both the metropolitan area of Salt Lake City as well as numerous national forests and state parks makes it a great place to experience both the urban and more rural sides of the beehive state. You can hop on the bus and enjoy dinner in the city one night, and go stargazing in the Wasatch National Forest the next. University of Utah’s Outdoor Adventure outlet also makes the outdoors more accessible with on campus gear rental. You can also easily partake in many of the events Salt Lake City has to offer with your student ID. Being able to have access to both outdoor and city recreation means that if anything, I will not be bored at the U.


5. Academics

What ultimately made me choose the U over other film programs that some may consider to be more well-recognized, was its selection of different courses that I wouldn’t have been able to take if I were to go to a traditional film school. With over two hundred majors, minors, and certificates to offer, I will be able to study what I love without feeling siloed into one field. Additionally, University of Utah’s partnership with different universities across the globe makes it possible for me to make progress in my studies while also immersing myself in another culture through the learning abroad program. As I register for my fall courses, I am also looking forward to what opportunities may lie outside of U.S. borders for me in the future.

With August and the first day of classes on the horizon and creeping closer with every day, I couldn’t feel more excited for the beginning of fall semester and all that the University of Utah College of Fine Arts has to offer.

Published in Finer Points Blog

Brought to you by Create Success Interns Abby Davis, Connor Brown, Hannah Keating, Lia Wong, Matthew Rudolph, Sam Judd, and Zoe Wink.

Hello College of Fine Arts students!

As we make the transition back to online and hybrid classes, here is a reminder of some helpful tips to help manage your time and reduce your Zoom fatigue!

1. Create a schedule or agenda.

 Whether or not you have used a planner in the past, now is a great time to REALLY use it! This can be useful in seeing your important dates and deadlines in an orderly fashion.

2. Work on one project at a time.

 If looking at your deadlines all at once is too overwhelming, make a notecard list!

  • Write each assignment with its deadline on its own notecard, order the notecards by date, and start knocking out each assignment one at a time. 

3. Set boundaries.

 We know that a lot of your school time is happening at home, and Zoom/computer fatigue is a real thing. Try setting a boundary for yourself as to what times of the day you will dedicate to school. For instance, maybe you try and stop doing school work by a certain time or you dedicate specific times where you take breaks.

  • Try to come up with some activities you enjoy doing that do not involve staring at a screen. For instance: going on a walk, taking a dance break, playing around on an instrument you may have picked up, or doing some crafts.  

4. Start early.

 If you happen to find that you have been sitting on the couch watching Tik Toks or doing whatever else keeps you occupied for hours at home, it sounds like it’s a good time to get a jump on some homework! Getting a head start on assignments when you have some free time will save you lots of stress in the long run. Trust us!

5. Sleep.

This one is pretty self explanatory, but it’s one tip that should not be forgotten. A fresh mind always helps with creativity!

Remember: This is a time where we can use our innovative minds to find the things that work best for us. Stay positive and never stop creating! 

Published in Finer Points Blog
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2020 continues to keep us all on our toes — with things changing rapidly as the public health situation evolves in our community. The University of Utah and College of Fine Arts continue to work tirelessly to plan the fall semester with safety as a top priority, and while things will look different, our commitment to the student experience is central and will not waver.

We know there is still a lot to be determined, and many of us are standing by for concrete answers and more specifics.

But here is the good news — we have identified several ways you can take action today to start to set yourself up for a rewarding year.  


Here are 7 things to do right now:  

1. Plan to Register

As you may know from the University’s Return to Campus plan, Fall 2020 classes will be conducted with a hybrid in-person and online approach. 

Plan to register for your classes now! If you are a continuing CFA student and have not already registered for Fall, we encourage you follow the directions that the University Registrar’s Office has sent to students to ensure you will be ready to complete your registration as soon as the system opens up (anticipated date: July 1, 2020). 

If you are already registered for classes, the University’s Registrar’s Office will encourage to check your schedule on or around July 1 to make sure you are aware of any scheduling changes that happened in the process.   

With things still taking shape, please also keep your eye on your Umail for any updates.

2. Create Success

Navigate on over to createsuccess.utah.edu which is packed with tips, links and resources for students to help them succeed in the CFA. This handy site provides you with the information to plan what to do early and what to do often. Now is the perfect time to get your calendar all lined up with your to-dos, setting yourself up for a great Fall 2020 and beyond. 

3. Lean on CFA’s Advisors

Not sure what classes to take or how to start creating success for yourself? CFA Academic Advisors are here to help you navigate the university so you can meet your academic goals. They are excellent problem solvers. They can help know what classes to take, discuss University policies and procedures, explore other campus opportunities, and connect you to campus resources.    

From Create Success, you can book an advising appointment with a CFA Academic Advisor. Don’t wait to get to know these wonderful student advocates!  

4. Join ArtsForce and explore its many resources

CFA students who have joined ArtsForce have access to important information about how to effectively articulate the knowledge and skills they are gaining in their arts degrees to those in and out of the arts. 

The ArtsForce canvas community has a ton of resources: advice from working professionals, how to prepare for internships, effective networking strategies, and ways to maximize your professional development. ArtsForce regularly announces professional development and internship opportunities (even now, as many positions have moved online).

Use time now to read through this information and make a plan to start your career in the arts today. If you aren’t already, join ArtsForce now.  

5. Join ProjectThriveCFA

Right after the COVID-19 pandemic hit our community, we started #ProjectThriveCFA to keep our students, faculty and staff connected from afar. This summer, we are continuing #ProjectThriveCFA on Instagram!  You can follow along to see how our community is deepening their practices, continuing to learn from a distance, and staying connected to their creativity during this time of continued uncertainty.  While much is unknown, we truly believe not just in the value of, but the need for art in trying times. 

So, use #ProjectThriveCFA and tag @uofufinearts on Instagram to be featured, and follow along to see how art persists.

6. Incoming student? Take a virtual campus tour!

University of Utah student ambassadors have put together a virtual campus tour on YouTube, walking you through the U’s most beloved spaces. Take the tour and get a bit more oriented before the fall begins.

If you have other orientation questions, visit https://orientation.utah.edu/orientation/first-year-fall-semester.php  

7. Get updates fast: Follow the CFA

Follow! Follow! Follow! Our social media channels will help you stay up to date with all the latest information both as we prepare to reopen campus and throughout the academic year. The CFA shares information from the university and across our five units. For more detailed curricular and programming info, check with your specific academic area.

College of Fine Arts
@uofufinearts | UofUFineArts  

Department of Art & Art History
@uofu_art | UtahArtArtHistory

School of Dance

Department of Film & Media Arts
@uofufandmad | UofUFandMAD

School of Music
@uofumusic | UofUMusic 

Department of Theatre
@uofutheatre | @UofUTheatre

Arts Pass

Published in Finer Points Blog

This is a series dedicated to highlighting the insights our students gained during their internships. 

Name: Aileen Norris, School of Dance

Internship: I interned with Queer Spectra Arts Festival in Spring 2019.

What responsibilities did you have as an intern?

It was QSAF's first year and festival, so I had a lot of responsibilities, from handling social media pages, to helping plan the festival, to brainstorming fundraising ideas, to running the technical side of the festival, which included sound and lights.

What new skills or knowledge did you gain from your internship?

My internship with Queer Spectra taught me many things, but chief among them that both the hardest and easiest thing to do when you have a goal is to start even before you're ready. I got to see the festival spark from an idea shared among friends in a living room into a day-long, well-attended and promoted event that hosted 30 artists and more than 300 audience members. This was because the founding members had the idea and immediately went with it rather than stressing over details. The pieces fell into place once the event was already set in motion. I also learned that as an artist, the ability to be flexible and available (while still staying true to yourself) is an asset not a lot of people learn to craft and practice, but it has served me in more ways than I can count.

What connections did you make and how do you think those connections may help you in your career?

I'm still on the coordinating committee for Queer Spectra, so that in and of itself is a huge connection that will be a priority and will inform my career in ways I still can't fully predict. Beyond that though, I've met so many artists and community members that have and will continue to inspire me. Being able to branch outside of my own studies into a larger amalgamation of different mediums, aesthetics, and belief systems has only grown my commitment to my own art form, while opening me up to collaborative ideas I hadn't considered in the past.

What advice would you give other students who are interested in a similar internship?

It never hurts to be candid about your interest. I spent a lot of time in college thinking that I couldn't tell someone that I wanted to work with them because it defied some sort of social code or hierarchy. But especially with artists, collaboration tends to be part of the gig, and a lot of organizations want to know that you're interested in the work they're doing, not just signing up for the credit or the external rewards of it. That goes for pursuing an internship as well as projects once you're actually involved in the internship itself.

How did your internship compliment your arts education?

One thing that I learned in the School of Dance is that to be a dance artist is more than being a performer or a choreographer or a teacher. You get to wear so many different hats; that can be confusing and daunting as well as exciting. Interning with Queer Spectra, I got to put that understanding into practice. I was a curator, an event coordinator, a production manager, a critic, an audience member, and a part of my community. Yes, I got to execute practical things I had learned, like how to run sound on QLab or what made a piece of choreography compelling, but beyond that, Queer Spectra was a dry run of engaging with the arts world in all of its facets and intricacies outside of the university's bubble. That was one big goal of the School of Dance's curriculum: that as artists we could flourish beyond the academic world as well as inside of it.

Are there other thing you would like to tell us?

As artists, we get to experience squiggly, often unconventional, sometimes roundabout careers. I find it to be equally parts frustrating and exciting, but it can be freeing to sit with both of those emotions side by side. Take comfort in your peers, in your communities, and in the things that make your craft worth it for you. Those things above all will keep you grounded. And don't forget to laugh--with others, by yourself, and sometimes at yourself.

Published in Finer Points Blog

The Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP), a national arts data and research organization, has collected and analyzed data from over 200,000 arts graduates from across North America since 2008. SNAAP data have helped change the national conversation on the value of an arts degree. The U College of Fine Arts regularly partners in SNAAP's efforts in surveying our own graduates and we are grateful to our alumni who have participated. Each survey gives us deeper insight into how best to serve our students. 

Recently, SNAAP released a special report examining what factors lead arts graduates to stay in the arts throughout their professional careers. The report clearly revealed that students are more likely to work professionally in the arts if they have created a network and completed an arts-based internship during their time in school. 

This is not news to us. We have long known the value of internships and professional networks and this data just further confirms our understanding of what students need to successfully transition in the arts! The College of Fine Arts continually invests in developing a strong internship program and providing opportunities and information to maximize professional success of our students, from experiential learning opportunities to building professional networks. Since 2012, the CFA has hired student interns to learn about various aspects of arts administration and strengthen their professional networks. And in 2013, interns assisted in the creation of our award-winning ArtsForce program. 

We encourage you to get to know your many professional resources.


Here are just a few of the ways CFA invests in student success and professional development:


Full-time CFA Internship Coordinator

In partnership with the CFA Undergraduate Student Affairs team and the University’s Internship Council, our full-time Internship Coordinator, Kate Wolsey, facilitates the development and expansion of internships, acts as the college’s primary contact for internship coordination, and assists in the coordination of the award-winning ArtsForce program. 


Career Treks to local and regional arts organizations

During the academic year, ArtsForce leads regular Career Treks to prominent local and regional arts organizations so students can meet arts professionals in their work environments, and experience firsthand the day-to-day operations and innerworkings of fine arts companies. 


Employment and internship opportunities  

Our Internship Coordinator regularly meets with employers to create opportunities and promote internships in the community. Open opportunities are shared with students through a weekly post on the ArtsForce Canvas community. All internships are vetted using the National Association of College and Employers (NACE) standards.


Helping students articulate the value of their degree

In the ArtsForce Canvas community, we regularly post relevant information that helps students articulate the value of their arts degree, become internship ready and learn how to network. Such topics include, how to conduct an informational interview, resources for improving your resumé and cover letter, ways to get involved in the art community on and off campus, and connecting students with mentors in their field. Check out all the past programs and events here! 

Informational Interviews with community professionals

“ArtsForce Asks” is a Finer Points blog series that highlights informational interviews conducted by ArtsForce interns with arts professionals. This series aims to provide CFA students with internship and career advice from the employer’s perspective, and illuminate the varied paths to success artists take.   

Annual Networking Event 

ArtsForce hosts an Annual Networking event that brings arts employers to campus, giving students a chance to network, receive professional guidance, ask questions, and connect with fellow CFA students across disciplines.


Student interns reflect and share their experiences  

Once students complete internships, we are eager to share their advice with their peers. Starting this fall, “Insights from an Intern,” a new Finer Points blog series, will highlight exceptional internship experiences of CFA students, as well as their advice for students seeking similar opportunities. Check out the first student profile here!


Published in Finer Points Blog

Here are 5 helpful time management tips brought to you by CFA Create Success Interns Abby Davis, Mason Henrie, Matthew Rudolph, and Lia Wong. 

Hello, College of Fine Arts Students!  

As we all make the transition to online classes, here are some helpful tips to help manage your time. 

Create a schedule or agenda.

Whether or not you have used a planner in the past, now is a great time to REALLY use it! This can be useful in seeing you​r important dates and deadlines in an orderly fashion. 

Work on one project at a time. 

If looking at your deadlines all at once is too overwhelming, make a notecard list!  

  • Write each assignment with its deadline on its own notecard, order the notecards by date, and start knocking out each assignment one at a time.  

Start early. 

If you happen to find that you have been sitting on the couch watching Tik Toks or doing whatever else keeps you occupied for hours at home, it sounds like it’s a good time to get a jump on some homework!

Getting a head start on assignments when you have some free time will save you lots of stress in the long run. Trust me!  


This one is pretty self-explanatory, but it’s one tip that should not be forgotten. A fresh mind always helps with creativity! 

Remember: This is a time where we can use our innovative minds to find the things that work best for us. Stay positive and never stop creating!    

CreateSuccess bubbles wtext1

Published in Finer Points Blog

Have questions regarding online learning this spring semester? 

Wherever you currently are reading this, the CFA Academic Advisors are available to you through phone and video appointments. 

If you would like to book an advising appointment, please use createsuccess.utah.edu.

A FERPA Pin is required for phone or video advising appointments.
Learn how to get an online FERPA Pin here

Check your Umail for important updates - not just from CFA advising but also the University, your departments, and your instructors. Remember not all messages sent to your Umail will forward to your preferred email so checking your Umail daily is a best practice.
You can send quick advising questions (from your Umail) to . We will get back to you as quickly as possible. 

We are here to help you be successful. 

From the CFA Undergraduate Affairs Academic Advising Team
Andrew Grace, Jennifer McLaurin, Samuel Banford, Eric Schmitz, Rachel Luebbert, April Casiano & Liz Leckie

Published in Finer Points Blog

We’re so excited that joining the team of brilliant and dedicated student advocates is CFA alum, Rachel Luebbert!

“Our academic advisors provide integral components of our Create Success Initiative, which is our program dedicated to facilitating student success,” said Liz Leckie, the CFA’s Associate Dean for Undergraduate Student Affairs. “And we’re looking forward to continuing our tradition of strong evidence-based advising with Rachel on our team.”

Academic advisors are educators and problem solvers who advocate for students as they navigate their personal journeys through higher education and attain their academic goals. Through inclusion and connection, academic advisors open doors to new opportunities for self-awareness and growth, empowering students to define their roles as citizens within local and global communities.

Rachel graduated from the University of Utah with a BFA in Modern Dance, a BA in Spanish, and a minor in Business. Upon leaving Salt Lake, Rachel worked at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival to develop accessible programming at this long running festival. Later, she moved to DC where she worked as an arts administrator, dance teacher, and stage manager. Outside of work, Rachel loves experiencing arts events and museums, traveling, reading, and creating dance work. Rachel is so excited to be back in Salt Lake working with the incredible students of the College of Fine Arts.

“I came to academic advising because I am passionate about the value of an arts education and the advocacy of student success,” Luebbert said. “As an advisor, I aspire to help students navigate the University based on their individualized needs. I value connecting students with opportunities and resources that are meaningful and important to their holistic experience.”

Help us welcome Rachel!

Published in Finer Points Blog
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