You are here

Find YOUR Path! Event Helps to Build Successful Futures for Arts Students

On Friday, April 15, 2022 the Arts Division held its annual Arts Professional Pathways: Find YOUR Path! event for UCSC arts students. This online professional development event connected Arts Division students with employers, alumni, and practitioners in the local and national creative, entertainment, non-profit, and technology industries.

“I really enjoyed the pathways program,” said student Jackson Richmond. “Listening to all the employed speakers share their career stories gave me a much better understanding of how jobs are found, how certain employers seek employees, and what employers generally look for from applicants. During the Q&A people were asking predictable questions, namely the ones about how to enter the industry that they're a part of, and the speakers actually provided concise and tangible answers to it. I found it especially useful whenever they mentioned any platforms or methods in which to find employers and/or how to contact them.”

Find YOUR Path! helps develop students’ network and can lead to new opportunities. A successful artistic or creative career is not usually based on talent and hard work alone, but is also about the connections students make while they’re in school. Making these important connections can launch their careers.

“Find Your Path! is the type of program that could have a radical impact on UCSC students’ trajectory after graduation,” said featured speaker Trisha Lagaso Goldberg who is an independent curator and community arts leader. “I wish I had this type of access to arts leaders and practitioners when I was in college! The visibility of women and people of color thriving in this realm is particularly significant at this juncture of the student’s experience. It was an honor to participate and connect with these emerging thinkers and creatives.”

Trisha Lagaso Goldberg

Students were invited to bring copies of their resumes/CVs and talk to industry experts about how to make an impact on future employers. Industry fields represented included professional artist, UI/UX designer, game designer, editor, filmmaker, and museum curator.

“Find YOUR Path was really inspiring... it's always great to hear how people got into their fields, especially ones that are notoriously difficult, like the arts,” said student Aja Bond.  “I really felt how much the presenters wanted to give back to people just starting out as they once were. Many offered their contacts and to make themselves available to talk one-to-one after the event, which was very generous. I was really impressed with the scope of arts professionals that were at this event, and the breakout rooms really made it so that everyone could find what they what they were looking for and a smaller, intimate group to ask questions and advice about potential career paths.”

This year's featured speakers were:

  • Vida Mia Garcia: Senior Manager & Lead Design Researcher, Capital One
  • Erica Gerard Di Bona: Author; Fundraising and Development Professional
  • Lisa Gold: Executive Director, Asian American Arts Alliance
  • Vivien Greene: Senior Curator, Guggenheim Museum
  • Trisha Lagaso Goldberg: Independent Curator and Community Arts Leader
  • Matthew Prescott: Editor of All American
  • Joe Quadara: Game Designer, Producer
  • Andrew Smith: Executive Director, Indexical
  • Jimmy Zhou: Researcher, Riot Games

Participating Organizations:

  • Independent Television Service, Inc. (ITVS)
  • San Jose Museum of Art
  • Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History (MAH)

Andrew Smith, executive director of Indexical was thrilled to meet the students: “Meeting these dynamic students from UCSC at Find YOUR Path has helped me keep in touch with what skills younger people are bringing to the industry, while also making clear my own blind spots to possible barriers that might be facing their entry into the arts sector. As a local organization, Indexical has benefited greatly from connecting with students in Santa Cruz—it's led to engagements with them as volunteers, paid interns, and even on-stage artists!”

Andrew Smith

For more information about Arts Professional Pathways, visit: