Career Development Program

2015 CDP graduatesThe Center for Arts Education’s Career Development Program creates opportunities for exceptional high school seniors to participate in school-to-career activities in the arts and related industries. The goal: to expose students, teachers, counselors, and administrators to the many career options in New York City’s $21 billion arts industry. CAE’s Career Development Program was created in 1999, and more than 600 students and 100 worksites have participated since then.

Each fall, qualified students from participating schools throughout New York City go through a rigorous selection process, at the end of which twenty-five to thirty students remain. At the beginning of the spring semester, this select group takes part in an intensive, three-week orientation at CAE. Also known as "Boot Camp", the orientation provides job-skills training, showcases careers in the arts and related industries, and prepares students for worksite internship placements in fields including marketing, theater, design, music, architecture, the visual arts, and fashion.

CDP 2015 Met visit w Jerry

Current internship worksites include: 

  • Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
  • Ballet Hispanico
  • Brooklyn Arts Council
  • The Center for Arts Education
  • CUE Art Foundation
  • Elders Share the Arts
  • Fashion Institute of Technology
  • Harlem School of the Arts
  • LeAP 
  • Lincoln Center Education
  • Midori and Friends
  • PBS Point of View
  • Primary Stages
  • Rockwell Group
  • Roundabout Theatre Company
  • Sing for Hope
  • St. Nick's Alliance
  • Studio Museum in Harlem
  • Vital Theatre Company

"They taught us to believe in ourselves, which allowed us to shine."     -Student, Career Development Program

Once placed at their internships, students are assigned a project and a mentor. Recent interns' work has ranged from keeping press logs, to creating Flash animation, writing newsletters, and doing research for a television documentary.

The orientation curriculum addresses the recommendations of the U.S. Department of Education Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS), the New York State Learning Standards for Career Development and Occupational Studies (CDOS), and the New York City Performance Standards for Applied Learning. The curriculum handbooks are available to the general public for a nominal fee.

During the course of their 13-week internships, students receive regular feedback and support from their worksite, their CAE mentors, and educators from their schools.

Each student also:

  • participates in a Career Awareness Day
  • receives a stipend
  • receives one elective credit from his/her high school

E-mail [email protected] if you are a NYC High School to find out how your students can apply, or email [email protected] to become a CDP worksite.