ProArts Connect celebrates its first anniversary

ProArts Connect logo

Alison O'Leary Murray
February 09, 2011

When Visual and Media Arts major Edgar Rosa ’13 needs to assemble a production team for a film, he doesn’t have to look further than the computer on his desk.

The ProArts Connect social media network, which is celebrating its first anniversary, is a lifeline for Rosa.

Developed to link the student, faculty, and alumni communities of Emerson and the five other members of the ProArts Consortium schools, ProArts Connect allows members of these communities to seek out talent they need for a specific project, find employment, and even locate an apartment to rent.

The six ProArts Consortium member schools are: Emerson, Berklee College of Music, the Boston Conservatory, the Boston Architectural College, the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, and Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

Among the many benefits offered by the Consortium, including the social media network, is the ability for students to register for classes offered by one of the other institutions.

“Last fall, 18 students studied at Berklee, 1 at the Boston Architectural College, 3 at the Boston Conservatory, 10 at MassArt, and 2 at the SMFA,” said Kelly McCabe, Emerson’s assistant registrar. A link to the registration policies and procedures is available on ProArts Connect website.

Along with offering recording equipment for sale, web design services, and job listings, ProArts Connect was used to pull together some amazing kickball teams that squared off in Emerson’s Bobbi Brown and Stephen Plofker Gym last fall.

“I have had an overwhelming amount of success through ProArts. It has put me in contact with music students and professors from Berklee, film students from MassArt, and local professionals.”

“This site doesn’t compete with Facebook, but it fills a void. What we hear from students is that it’s valuable for its locality in the sense that it’s a community of young artists in Boston,” said Ross Bresler, a Berklee professor and executive director of ProArts Connect. “It doesn’t do anything technically radical, it’s an elegantly easy-to-use tackboard; people can use it how ever they want.”

In just a year, ProArtsConnect.org has tallied 3,500 registered members, 737 of whom are connected to Emerson. All you need to set up an account is a valid email address from one of the member institutions. Alumni with college email addresses may use it as well.

Rosa is an enthusiastic fan of the site.

“I was working on a few films that were in need of things that ProArts offered through their postings. A year later, ProArts Connect is a routine visit every time I am working on a film or related project,” he said. “I have had an overwhelming amount of success through ProArts. It has put me in contact with music students and professors from Berklee, film students from MassArt, and local professionals.”

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