Average Entry-Level Experienced
Wage Wage Wage
art director $32.25 $18.64 $39.06
are more specialized; they must not only write well, but be able to
producer and director $25.82 $12.18 $32.65
understand and clearly describe complicated technical processes.
public relations specialist $23.70 $13.49 $28.81
librarian $21.84 $16.33 $24.60
writer and author $21.74 $11.57 $26.82 If your goal is a career in the arts, you probably already have
sound engineering Technician $21.44 $8.97 $27.68 identified your particular interests. The trick is to figure out how
multimedia artist and animator $20.91 $15.29 $23.72
to find your way to an occupation that lets you use your talents.
editor $20.68 $12.15 $24.94
“There aren’t linear career routes as you might see in accounting
or engineering. Our students will go to a wide variety of places,”
graphic designer $19.83 $12.30 $23.60
says UT Austin’s Berndt. “Our graduates are working as publicists,
music director and composer $19.55 $7.36 $25.65
journalism teachers, marketing coordinators, copywriters, in sales
This is a chart of hourly wages for 10 of the top-paying careers in the Arts, A/V Technology &
and account management, in advertising, in intelligence, in public
Communications cluster in Texas. Note how entry-level wages are often much lower than pay for the average
worker and experienced workers in each profession. Source: Texas Workforce Commission. affairs, and in the publishing business.”
Berndt stresses that working on your business
and marketing skills can yield big dividends in Arts,
A/V Technology & Communications. “Students
If students are flexible enough to see the full range of different
are not marketable just because they have a
directions their talents might lead them, they are a lot more likely to
communications degree. They have to define
succeed. Public relations, for instance, spans a number of different
their skills and qualifications and interests to
job opportunities, says Jerry C. Hudson, dean of the College of Mass
potential employers,” says Berndt. “The same can
Communications at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. “The field
be said for radio, TV, or film degrees as well.
includes event planning,” Hudson says, “or students could work for
“Students can’t just study,” Berndt adds.
corporations, hospitals, or nonprofit organizations.”
“They have to gain experience through
And Becky Kores, a teacher of advertising design at Dallas’s
internships, or working in student media.
Skyline High School, reports that her students have found jobs
Their education is only the start. Without that
“all the way from tattoo art—which is not my focus—to being
experience, they’re underqualified.”
animators for video games, comic book artists, and medical
Cagle says you have to cultivate a rock-solid
illustrators. Some students work for ad agencies, some for printers.
belief in your own talent. “For every time you hear,
Some students become art teachers. It’s all over the board.”
‘that’s great,’ you might hear five
These choices can make a difference. The Texas Workforce
or 10 people say ‘I really don’t like
Commission projects that although the number of Texas writers
that.’ To really succeed, you
and authors will grow 8.5 percent between 2002 and 2012, the
have to have a confidence,
number of technical writers in the state will grow 19.7 percent, more
than twice as fast. The work is different as well. Technical writers
is Arts, A/v Technology & Communications the right cluster for you?
Take this quiz to find out. Answer “yes” or “no” to the following questions.
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.
do you have do you like do you like Is it important do you play do you like to Have you ever are you do you know do you like
an active to visit art to read short to you to a musical draw? acted in a independent how to set decorating
imagination? museums? stories and express your instrument? school play? and creative? up sound your room?
novels more feelings? equipment?
If you answered “yes” to five or more of the above questions, Arts, A/V Technology & Communications may be the right cluster for you.
To get a more specific and scientific measurement of your attitudes and abilities, ask your guidance counselor or teacher about taking a
career assessment test or interest inventory.
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