Creative Enterprise and Cultural Leadership, MA
Accelerated Program

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The MA program in creative enterprise and cultural leadership empowers students to advance innovation in the cultural sector, support creative work and careers, and design public and private enterprises that will strengthen arts and design in the future.

The program prepares students to understand the complex economic, legal, political and social context that surrounds any innovation or enterprise. Students are exposed to design thinking pedagogy as they increase their capacity for interpersonal communication, public communication, opportunity recognition, network and systems thinking, problem recognition and creativity. Students also demonstrate ability in cultural leadership and knowledge of the creative industries, distribution of creative products, the creative process and management of innovation in the creative industries.

Program offered

Creative Enterprise and Cultural Leadership, MA

Offered by
Herberger Institute for Design & the Arts


Plan of study

The Plan of study is the required curriculum to complete the program.

View Plan of Study

Application requirements

Application procedures + requirements

Application deadlines

Applications are considered on a rolling basis through June to start in the fall.

Paying for college


Find and apply for relevant scholarships.

Financial Aid

ASU has many financial aid options. Almost everyone, regardless of income, can qualify for some form of financial aid. In fact, more than 70 percent of all ASU students receive some form of financial assistance every year.

Program requirements

Required Core (15 credit hours)
GRA 501 Creative Environment and Collaborative Leadership (3)
HDA 511 Leadership in the Creative Industries (1)
HDA 512 Strategy: Problem Identification and Opportunity Recognition in the Creative Industries (2)
HDA 513 Creativity and Design Thinking (3)
HDA 521 Arts, Culture and the Economy (3)
HDA 522 Media Literacy and Distribution (3)

Electives or Research (9 credit hours)
creative enterprise development elective (3)
leadership elective (3)
other approved elective (3)

Other Requirements (1 credit hour)
HDA 583 Fieldwork (1)

Culminating Experience (6 credit hours)
HDA 593 Applied Project (6)

Additional Curricular Information
Electives are approved in consultation with either the student's committee or the program director.

Program highlights

  • Accelerated program - Earn your MA in three semesters.
  • Cohort model - Learn in an environment that offers peer support and intimate class sizes.
  • Field experience - Meet leaders and experience arts and culture in another city.
  • Applied project - Launch your creative project or enterprise.
  • Institute Professors - Work with faculty mentors who are socially-engaged arts leaders.
  • Project-based learning - Take concepts from the classroom to the community.

Learn more about the program

National leaders as faculty

The MA in Creative Enterprise and Cultural Leadership faculty draw on the expertise of interdisciplinary scholars and practitioners who are shaping the future of art and design today. ASU faculty include Institute Professors Maria Rosario Jackson(arts in equitable development), Michael Rohd (theatre and civic practice) and Daniel Roumain (field experience), as well as Herberger Institute Dean Steven Tepper (cultural policy and creative work) among others. This program offers opportunities to connect with the National Accelerator for Cultural Innovation, the Studio for Creativity, Place and Equitable Communities, and other initiatives of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.

Faculty highlights:

The Field Experience

The Field Experience course takes students to a destination outside of Phoenix to engage with how art and design are shaping that city. Through meetings with field leaders and site visits to see projects in action, students see new innovations in supporting creative practice and new ways of connecting arts to other fields and to the city.

Previous Field Experiences have traveled to Los Angeles, Nashville and New York. Trips have included sessions with the Apollo Theatre, Maker City LA, Creative Arts Agency, Sony Studios, Creative Capital, NEW INCand BAM among other organizations and initiatives.

Learn more

Application requirements

The applicant must meet all admission requirements of the Graduate College, including a bachelor’s degree in a broad range of related fields.

Application requirements

  • Completed online application
  • English proficiency test
    (International applicants only)
  • Letter of intent
    Include your reasons for applying to this program and how your abilities and interests make you a suitable candidate.
  • Sample of work
    Include a brief contextual cover sheet and 2-5 examples of relevant academic, creative or professional work such as:
    • Academic essay or report;
    • Sample of professional or technical writing;
    • Business, project or marketing plan;
    • Material produced for your professional creative practice;
    • Documentation of your creative projects (blog, video, photos, video, website)
    • Curatorial materials for an event/exhibition/program;
    • Other relevant material.
  • Two letters of recommendation
    From professionals who can speak to the potential for success in the graduate program and in future work.
  • Professional résumé
  • Undergraduate university transcripts
  • Application fee
  • GRE test scores are optional and are not a requirement to apply for this program

Application deadlines: Applications are considered on a rolling basis through June to start the following fall.
Contact our program coordinator with questions:

Apply now!