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Arts Advantage

We asked adults in diverse fields about their arts training and education, regardless of their current profession. A common theme was found. In all successes, the arts gave them a “leg up” to a successful career – we call it an “Arts Advantage.”

As you should expect, they approach their professions with creativity, but they also garnered confidence, discipline, and dedication crucial to mastering an art form. While cultivating a talent, they developed oblique skills, setting them on a path for a thriving adulthood. Their ability to perform under pressure, handle a complicated task, or find a creative solution was honed in that crucial K-12 time and beyond.

Our mission is to put the arts at the center of life and learning in Nebraska. As you read the testimonials of these professionals, you’ll hear stories of focus, practice, and success, all underscoring what they now contribute to Nebraska. The arts poise one to handle a holistic view of life and work.

We need to keep the arts strong in our schools by providing opportunities. We need to not narrow our youth’s education, but present more and richer experiences for them to challenge and broaden their viewpoint.

Take a look at some of the stories captured on video and the written testimonials. After being inspired feel free to submit your own story - you can find the form at the bottom of this page!


  • Dr. Cyndi Russell (visual art)


  • Derek Pressnall (visual art and music)


  • Dave Ciavarella (theatre)
  • William Stibor


  • Christian Dollwet (dance)
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