News & Events

How Do Arts Leaders Navigating Difficult Decision-Making In A Time Of Crisis? Director of the Arts Extension Service, Dee-Boyle Clapp addresses these questions and more.
Arts Programming teaches students how quality arts programming is at the core of all arts and culture organizations. One assignment in the course asks students to find connections and note the contrast between an organization’s program values and the student’s personal values. Leea Reese Russell, who was enrolled in Arts Programming last semester, explored her history with public schools and the role they play in her current career at the Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge.

The Arts Extension Service is excited to announce, HeART of the Garden, a collaboration with UMass Permaculture Initiative to integrate the arts into the Franklin Permaculture Garden. The partners currently seek a student artist or artists to propose a project that aligns with the values of sustainability and permaculture. Permaculture can be defined as a way of meeting human needs while increasing ecosystem health. It is based on three core ethics: Earth care, people care, and fair share.

By Daniel Callahan, Arts Extension Instructor


I am ultimately a mystery, living as a human being named “Daniel” socially understood as an African American, cis-gender male, engaged in this collective experience of life.


I tell stories. I show stories. I create expressions, designs, and experiences. I play with thoughts and ask questions. I observe and craft meaning from life.

By John Delconte, Arts Extension Service Instructor

I recently met with artist/documentary filmmaker Serena Kovalosky over coffee at a warm coffee shop just outside of Saratoga, NY. The shop had a gas fireplace set in the center of a seating area with comfortable chairs that made it all the more inviting for a brainstorming session on a cold day in December.

I heard the news this November that Venice was underwater a month to the day that we arrived there. At first glance, all the historic places that my spouse and I had just visited for a special anniversary appeared flooded. The squares, the ancient buildings, the citizens, and many tourists were dealing with a crisis that came when water in excess of six feet hit Venice - the result of Acqua Alta (high water) a storm, high winds, and an elevation that is essentially at sea level and sinking.

An important part of the Arts Extension Service’s work is to provide trainings and workshops for arts managers, artists, and public or private clients across the nation. Arts Extension Service Director, Dee Boyle-Clapp, has been busy this past spring and fall leading workshops for the Connecticut Office of the Arts. These evening or morning-long workshops and full day trainings serve as an introduction to the significant role the arts play in communities.

In many Arts Extension Service courses, students work with a case study organization to apply their learning in real-time throughout the semester. Currently, our fall online courses in Financial Management in the Arts, Arts Programming, and Cultural Equity in the Arts are interfacing with nonprofit organizations on course projects.

The Arts Extension Service (AES) is passionate about helping artists to fund their creative endeavors. AES developed the free, evening length workshop, Upping the Ante: How to Secure Funding as an Artist, to support artists and creatives who want to make more money from their creative businesses. Dozens of artists attended the workshops facilitated by local artist and arts manager Burns Maxey on September 24th at the Amherst Jones Library and October 2nd at the Holyoke Public Library.

By Kate Beckley, Arts Extension Service Department Assistant

The audience plays a significant role in the art world. They determine success, in part based on whether they choose to participate in the arts at all. However, the power of audiences extends far beyond the direct interactions with arts events. Thus, studying and researching arts audiences can be as crucial to an arts event as the art itself. By understanding how audiences are impacted by arts events, and how they, in turn, choose to create (or not create) their impact through the arts, this research can be used to create developmental tools to enrich audience experiences at arts events.