Graduate Programs

The Business of Art & Design (MPS)

Gain the business skills necessary to start and grow a business or be a dynamic manager or creative director. Combine your creative talents with the fundamental tools of commerce needed to manage finances, negotiate contracts, market your work, and achieve business success.

The Master in Professional Studies in the Business of Art and Design (M.P.S. BAD) provides a comprehensive, highly concentrated education in business management specifically for artists, designers, and related professions. Fundamental to the work of these creative professionals is the production of creative goods and services--yet until now there has been no business degree specifically focused on their unique needs.

Program Overview

This innovative Master's program meets this need with a curriculum that is designed to give you the knowledge and skills necessary to start, sustain, or grow an art or design related business, or to be a dynamic creative manager working with or within a business. Completed online in just 15 months, with three brief residencies, it allows you to study full-time while maintaining your current work-life balance.

From pitching your idea to crafting a strong marketing strategy, to developing contractual and financial documents, students are guided through every facet of business. By graduation, students have a strong array of business skills and knowledge, a solid community of peers and mentors, and a business plan in hand to help map their professional path.

Students learn the intricacies of intellectual property, human resources, contracts and negotiations, and marketing from successful business people and industry experts. The unique residency enables you to work together on MICA's campus, allowing students to build a network of colleagues while learning the most current ideas and best practices.

Residency Overview

The program includes a unique three-day residency on MICA’s campus in Baltimore providing students with opportunities to build a network of colleagues, interact with business professionals, and learn the most current ideas and best practices for running their business. This residency is an important part of your graduate experience not found in other programs.

What is a Master of Professional Studies (MPS) degree?

  • Focuses on an applied field of study

  • Develops practical skills

  • Perfect for current and aspiring professionals

  • Delivered online over just 15 months

  • Residency fosters interdisciplinary collaboration

  • Students maintain a work-life balance

Program Resources

The MICA Canvas environment is a flexible and adaptive platform so students can conveniently access content. Each faculty member holds a weekly live class delivered through Zoom web-conferencing software, whereby students can discuss topics with faculty and classmates. Lectures are recorded so students can revisit them at any time. Students also have access to MICA's web-based resources such as Adobe Creative Suite,, MyMICA (MICA’s student portal), Decker Library and Media Resources Center, and Business Source Premier(the industry's most used business research database).

Who Should Apply

Designed for students from a variety of disciplines including visual artists, designers, architects, illustrators, musicians, actors, writers, craft persons, performing artists, and other creative professionals this program is ideal for individuals with a strong entrepreneurial spirit, a drive for business success, and a willingness to commit to an intensive learning experience.  

Featured Course

Business Ethics in Art and Design Careers

Develop the knowledge necessary to understand key business agreements such as employment contracts, made-for-hire agreements, client agreements, gallery contracts, non-disclosure agreements, and license agreements. Students review various negotiation strategies; and how and when to identify negotiable opportunities effectively for their art or design business needs.