How theatre helps you get a job

Theatre students develop a variety of skills that are attractive to employers across all fields. Some of the top skills a Theatre student develop include:

• Effective writing and oral communication skills
• Ability to read, reflect, and critique
• Working collaboratively in a interdisciplinary environment
• Meeting deadlines and managing time
• Understanding components of complex problems and finding solutions
• Perceiving patterns/structures
• Comparing/contrasting
• Synthesizing information
• Managing a project from conception to completion
• Perceiving the world from multiple viewpoints
• Imagination and creativity
• Researching and interpreting data
• Conceptualizing original material
• Evaluating results
• Analyzing texts and character interpretation
• Writing creatively
• Presentation and public speaking
• Developing listening skills
• Learning to follow complex direction
• Understanding the body/ mind connection
• Adaptability and artistic vision
• Intellectual curiosity and emotional intelligence
• Developing a context for transformation
• Self-discipline and attention to detail

In the National Association of Colleges & Employers’ (NACE) 2011 Job Outlook, the skills and abilities such employers are seeking were listed in order of importance. The top ten skills were:


  • Communication (verbal)
  • Strong work ethic
  • Teamwork
  • Analytical skills
  • Initiative
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Communication (written)
  • Interpersonal skills (relates well to others)
  • Computer skills
  • Flexibility/adaptability
  • Communication (verbal)

Organizations consistently seek candidates who possess a collection of “transferrable skills” – skills acquired through your classes, extracurricular involvement, experience, and hobbies that are applicable to virtually any position. The skills listed above all fit into this category and students in the Arts and Theatre as noted by professionals and academics alike, participate in a rich curriculum that develops their skills in many, if not all, of these areas and beyond, making them extremely marketable and valuable to potential employers. In the current Recruiting Trends report put out by the Collegiate Employment

Research Institute, nearly 40% of employers indicate that they will seek candidates across “all majors,” focusing more on the skills and abilities needed in the organization than on a specific academic discipline.


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