Insights from an Intern: Emily Kleinschmidt, School of Dance

November 30 2020

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

Name: Emily Kleinschmidt, School of Dance

Internship: ArtsForce & an apprenticeship with Twin Cities Ballet

What responsibilities did you have as an intern?

With ArtsForce, I worked on a team of other interns to plan workshops and create meaningful content for students in the College of Fine Arts. This content centered around teaching students other necessary skills they would need to have successful careers in the arts.

My role at Twin Cities Ballet was to dance professionally in all of their productions in the 2019/2020 season.

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

A lot of times in the arts — or at least in ballet — we're taught to follow directions. While this is a good skill, ArtsForce taught me how to also be a leader and to have my own ideas. These are invaluable skills. There are a lot of times in an area of work where you need to be a follower and do what you're told. But there are also times where you need to take initiative. Any good organization will want an employee who is smart and can bring something to the table.

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

I was able to network with fellow students and professionals in the Salt Lake area. Hearing about others' experiences helped me gain insight into what I would have to do to have a career in the arts and what that career might look like. Being able to talk to others and ask questions is so helpful in getting where you want to go.

The Twin Cities has a tight knit dance community.  I've found that creating good relationships with the people here is integral to having a successful career. I've worked with some wonderful dancers at Twin Cities Ballet; I feel like we could all call on each other for help in our future careers. 

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

Find an internship that will be really valuable to your education and career. It's important to build your resume, but pick something where you feel you time is being utilized well and you're gaining meaningful experiences--whether that's meeting certain people, creating something, or learning something you couldn't otherwise learn. You want to feel like your time was well spent.

How did your internship compliment your arts education?

ArtsForce exposed me to many more aspects of the arts world that I didn't realize were important; it taught me to be more than just a good dancer. I found an interest in arts administration and in creating content. While being an apprentice with Twin Cities Ballet was the first step into the professional ballet world for me, ArtsForce taught me that I have so much more to offer in my career.

Are there other things you would like to tell us?

As early as possible, figure out what you are worth. You have worked very hard to get to where you are today, so you deserve to be valued. Surround yourself with people who value your time and your efforts. You want to get out of an experience what you put in, so pick your experiences carefully and don't undervalue yourself.