For a lot of people, college is a time for exploration — whether it be through academics, student organizations or other extracurriculars. However, not every student is having a “Pitch Perfect” college experience.
So, when one of our readers asked us, “What are some opportunities for non-Fine Arts majors to participate in the arts at UT?” we looked into it as part of Curious Campus, our series where we answer reader-submitted questions every week.
At a university as large and expansive as UT, it can be hard to find an outlet for artistic hobbies, especially for non-Fine Arts majors. Vanessa Sun, a Plan II and business freshman, said the arts have always been a part of her life since she was little, even though she is not a fine arts major.
“I knew I wanted to do a cappella when I entered college, and how I found that out is I went to a lot of the club fairs on campus when school started,” Sun said. “I saw a couple of a cappella groups tabling, so I got their information … and ended up joining One Note Stand.”
Tim Rogers, student engagement director at Texas Performing Arts, said that Hook ‘em Arts, the registered student organization connected to Texas Performing Arts, is a good place to start for those who may not know exactly what type of arts they want to participate in.
“The group is open to anyone of all majors — people who just essentially like the performing arts and want to be around other people that do too,” Rogers said.
Hook ‘em Arts raises awareness for arts-related events on campus, but Rogers said it also helps students find out about other opportunities at UT and connect to the broader fine arts community.
“Typically a third to a half of the people are in one of the arts majors, but everyone else is not. It’s a good way for people who were involved in theater, band or choir, or whatever in high school, but then now are majoring in business or education or engineering to stay connected with that,” Rogers said.
Travis Willmann, UT Libraries communications officer, said the Foundry, a makerspace in the Fine Arts Library, provides various media tools and machines such as sewing machines, 3D printers and a recording studio for students to use for their creative projects.
“There are Canvas courses that are provided by the managers at the Foundry to provide certification training for each of the tools and equipment,” Willmann said. “We have both professional techs and student techs on-site to also assist students who are new to some of these tools as well.”
Whatever avenue students use to explore their interests, Sun said she thinks the arts are an important part of her college experience.
“It’s just a great way to meet new people while doing the things that I love,” Sun said.