Undergraduate Major

Visual & Performing Arts (BA)

Hone your craft while simultaneously developing critical and creative thinking skills when you major in visual and performing arts. You'll obtain an interdisciplinary education plus a specialization in music, dance, or visual art.

Fine Art Hero

Program Overview

Majoring in visual and performing arts opens up worlds of unique ways to communicate through image, sound, and movement. At Widener, you'll receive an interdisciplinary education as you specialize in music, dance, or visual art.

You'll develop critical thinking and analytic skills through classroom discussions, scholarly essays and research papers, and formal presentations. Each semester, you'll put your work on display with formal performances created through collaboration with distinguished professional artists.

Your professors will become your mentors as they connect you with internship and civic engagement opportunities that enhance your creative work. A flexible curriculum means you'll also have the chance to study abroad and engage with new cultures.

Join faculty-coached performance ensembles to further build your creative community. Upon graduation, you'll have a diverse portfolio of work plus engaged learning experiences that will enhance any career path you choose.

Program Options

Students may choose to concentrate in music, dance, visual art, or arts administration. 

Loading... requirements for the visual and performing arts major.

Widener's pre-professional pathways give you the flexibility to follow your interests while preparing for a professional career.

Visual and performing arts majors can participate in the following pathways:

Arts Minor

Loading... requirements for the arts minor.

Dance Minor

Loading... requirements for the dance minor.

Music Minor

Loading... requirements for the music minor.

Digital humanities is a rapidly growing, interdisciplinary field that incorporates new tools and methodologies for pursuing modes of inquiry and producing forms of scholarship and engagement in the humanities. It seeks to apply humanistic reasoning and research to important questions related to technology, such as social sustainability, big data, and privacy. Work in digital humanities includes public humanities, data mining/visualization, web design, textual analysis, educational technology, and ethics and technology. The concentration in digital humanities is open to all humanities majors.

Loading... requirements for the digital humanities concentration.

Communication studies is a natural pairing for visual & performing arts majors. This double major enables students to combine a love of visual art with graphic design.


Program Highlights

Though you'll specialize in one creative field, you'll be exposed to all fine arts contextual courses like music and art history. These courses will inform the historical and cultural context of your creations and help you discover unexpected connections between various arts.

Recital Series

World-renowned musicians perform on campus. Recitals are free and open to the public.

Fine Arts Historic Locations

Philadelphia Arts Opportunities

With Philadelphia just a short drive away, you'll have access to world-class museums and renowned music and dance performance groups. The city is an ever-evolving hub for artists so you'll feel like an insider with internship opportunities at institutions like the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology.

Fine Arts Faculty

Distinguished Faculty Mentors

From day one, you'll gain mentors in the visual and performing arts faculty who seek to know you both personally and professionally as you receive individualized instruction. You'll be supported in your creative endeavors and make connections with internationally-recognized artists like painter Wendy Hatch, dancer Katherine Kiefer Stark, and jazz trumpeter John Vanore.

Fine Arts Performance Ensembles

Unique Performance Ensembles

Beyond the classroom, you're encouraged to join music and dance performance groups on campus. Some groups like Chamber Ensemble are led by faculty; others are student-led, like the acapella group Keepin' It Trill and Widener Dance Company. You'll become a leader collaborating with your peers to put on spectacular performances each semester.

Fine Arts Immersive Experience

Immersive Learning Experiences

As a visual and performing arts major, you'll use your creative knowledge to explore and positively impact the world around you. Civic engagement opportunities like the Dance for Parkinson's program will engage you with your community and study abroad options to places like Greifswald, Germany will take you out of your comfort zone.


Our professors invest in your success through close mentoring and continual feedback. Get to know our visual and performing arts faculty.

Adjunct Instructor

In Widener’s visual and performing arts program, you’ll learn to appreciate arts and culture with a grounded and well-rounded outlook.

Ilene D. Lieberman
Gabriel Lukas Professor of Fine Arts

"Art is about ideas! By studying art, we learn what it means to be human. Images reveal the fundamentals of any society; by using an historical lens, we can decipher complex content embedded in representation."

Mara E. Parker
Chair of Visual & Performing Arts Department

"The arts teach us that one can communicate both concretely, with words, and abstractly, with music, visual art, and dance. The arts teach us to see, listen, communicate and think."

Your Inside Track to Success

Your Inside Track to Success

A visual and performing arts degree will prepare you for careers within the arts and beyond. Graduates hold meaningful jobs in diverse fields, using their creativity and problem-solving skills in a wide range of occupations.

Recent Employers & Industry Connections

  • Philadelphia Museum of Art
  • Wallingford Community Arts Center
  • Rittenhouse Women's Wellness Center
  • Avon Grove School District
  • Philly Easter Seals
  • Abilities 4 Work
  • Elsevier Inc.
  • Lyneer Search Group
  • Inspira Health Network

Outlook & Outcomes

Potential Careers

  • Performance
  • Not-for-profit management
  • Museumology
  • Education
  • Healthcare

Any & All Careers

Visual and performing arts majors bring their humanities skills to a wide variety of industries. Our graduates have worked in advertising, consulting for multimedia outlets, law, and the medical field in physical and occupational therapy.

Take the Next Steps

Join a leading university dedicated to your success.

Visit Us

To visit Widener is, more often than not, to fall in love with the place. To fit your timeline and schedule, we offer a variety of ways to get to know us.

View Tuition and Fees

When comparing costs, we encourage you to look beyond sticker price. Because Widener is a private institution, we’re able to offer financial assistance that brings our exceptional education within reach.

Financial Aid

Our financial aid team takes the guessing game out of applying for financial aid. To determine your financial aid package, including scholarships and grants, apply and complete the financial aid process. You might be surprised at how much we can offer in assistance.

Next steps to apply

Applying online has never been easier—and it’s free! We also accept the Common Application. Take the next step toward joining the Widener Pride. 

Get in Touch