Announcing: Our First Recipient of the Andy Bursten Memorial Scholarship, Anika Kwinana
Posted: February 1, 2018 at 3:36 pm, Last Updated: February 1, 2018 at 3:38 pm
Anika Kwinana is an emerging in arts and events leader, with a passion for the role that the arts can play in socio-economic development. She will graduate with an M.A. in Arts Management from George Mason University in Spring 2018, with a final project focused on diversity in the arts workforce.
Having lived in South Africa for more than a decade, she used her master’s degree in public anthropology to inform her work as a manager, facilitator and proposal developer for community-based youth, HIV-AIDS, and women’s empowerment programs. She also spent six of those years as full-time director of a music & arts department, leading more than 100 diverse volunteers, performing on a weekly basis for a congregation of more than 2,000 members. She produced, wrote for and performed on two live CD-DVD projects, selling more than 10,000 units.
While returning to the U.S. in Summer 2014 had its challenges, Anika continued to work in the arts, holding down three part-time jobs: selling performance subscriptions; house managing at a local performing arts center; and, producing a show for a growing theatre company.
In 2015 she began working full-time for an educational association, first as an administrative assistant, but was promoted within six weeks to event manager, and one year later, promoted to assistant director, currently managing STEAM-related college and career fairs in seven cities across the country. Her work entails concept development, program design, and partnership-building, but she finds connecting with students and families to be the most rewarding part of her work. She is a member of the American Society of Association Executives.
Anika believes that all of these experiences will add-value to her long-term goal of developing arts organizations, focusing on community development and creative economies.
She and her wife raise two daughters.