Art Institute of Chicago

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Art Institute of Chicago Reviews

Updated January 23, 2015
Updated January 23, 2015
35 Reviews
4.2
35 Reviews
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Douglas Druick
3 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Easily the best employer I've had

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago full-time

    Pros

    Asides from being a dream employer (if you're education and professional experience is in the arts), AIC is an amazing place to work. Staff is supportive, creative, flexible, and willing to try new things. Gone is the office place drama associated with working for a faceless corporation.

    Some of their perks/benefits are posted on their main website. They include: admission to just about every museum in the city (plus other attractions) for FREE with guests, benefits similar to 'member benefits for the AIC, generous retirement savings plans, a full month (30 days) of PTO for new employees that you can use right away (yes, a full month!). Discounts galore with companies throughout the city and with wireless carriers, pre-tax transit plans, being able to walk the galleries during lunch breaks (you can't do that in your corporate cafeteria, can you?) A warm and welcoming work environment with co-workers to match, and a company you actually want to come to work for every day vs. dreading it.

    Even if you're speciality isn't in the arts, there is so much more to AIC than just being a museum and school. Check out their open positions and apply, it's definitely worth considering if you're looking for a career field change.

    Cons

    Hard to say. Since it is a non-profit, their salaries generally are slightly lower than the same job in the for-profit world. But benefits, work environment and morale make up for that in my opinion.

    If you're not used to working on MACs you may have a hard time as for the most part, everyone uses MACs and there is very little PC support. Which again, I would consider a good thing.

    For some items there is little in terms of planning. The attitude of 'we have to do this because we've always done this' can be present with a few groups. Though each day we're working towards a stronger strategy in all aspects of our work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the great work. The AIC is an amazing place to work with great benefits, awesome coworkers and more. So long as those all stay in place, quality of work will continue to be top-notch.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Professional and Friendly

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Intern - Assistant Teacher in Chicago, IL
    Current Intern - Assistant Teacher in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    - Professional environment
    - Endless resources and large museum
    - Great teachers and Classes

    Cons

    I did not find anything unpleasant working here.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  3.  

    Great team to work with

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago

    Pros

    Great experience to start a career in museum setting.

    Cons

    The schedule for installation is so tight, as the museum never close to the public.

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  5.  

    You might not believe me, but I cannot imagine a better gig.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Contractor - Faculty in Chicago, IL
    Current Contractor - Faculty in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago as a contractor (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Freedom in the classroom, support in and out of the classroom, funding for conference travel as well as specialized software, tremendous respect, and just pay. Also, association with an insitute consistently ranked among the top of its kind, phenomenal colleagues, an exhuberant and open-minded student body, and a really cool city to call home.

    Cons

    Precarity, perhaps. I find this freeing, but others may not feel as I do. SAIC hires masses of contigent faculty, especially in the liberal arts department, with very few tenure lines. You will want to be comfortable signing an annual contract repeatedly if you are to find peace and happiness in this position.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The SAIC Admin is stellar. I cannot fathom better human beings, more sincerely committed to transforming education in ways that are ethical and focused foremost on student well-being and achievement (in the present as well as in the future). If I live 1000 years, I hope to spend the 965 I have left as a part of this community, working alongside of this administration. And if we (the US) ever figure out what it takes to create an educated democracy, I do not doubt that SAIC will have played a key role in that "figuring out" process.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Inspiring and Challenging in the Best Way

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Coordinator, Office of Student Affairs in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Coordinator, Office of Student Affairs in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Art Institute of Chicago full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The people are amazing, and that is invaluable. The students, the staff and the faculty are working together to revolutionize the art world one student at a time. The vacation and health insurance are top notch. HMO health insurance is through Cigna, and is the best coverage I've ever had.

    Cons

    Salary was the kicker for me. Staff at this school are really suffering, and ultimately I had to make a choice to pay my rent. I hated leaving, and hated that it came to this. I would go back in a heartbeat if it was a salary that met my needs.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  7.  

    Supportive, creative, flexible

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago

    Pros

    Shared creativity, range of activity, access to creative resources. Stimulating educational environment. Supportive community for career as well as artistic pursuits.

    Cons

    Lack of part time positions and/or ability to work four ten hour shifts. One of the benefits of working at the school is the ability to take one or two classes for free each semester. Without a flexible schedule the classes available are limited.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    As most employees are also artists, support 4/10 schedules for staff that would like to attend studio classes.

    Recommends
  8.  

    SAIC is excellent.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Intern - Student in Chicago, IL
    Former Intern - Student in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Art Institute of Chicago as an intern (more than a year)

    Pros

    Great professors. Great environment. Some great students.

    Cons

    Small campus. Accepts a lot of unqualified students.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be more selective. Elevate the student body to the quality of the faculty.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  9.  

    working hard for art and design

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Instructor in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Instructor in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great place if you are a self motivated creative type, if you are not you get set aside quickly. Best place to work in the midwest if you are an artist.

    Cons

    The "lefty" politics get in the way and are applied upon each other brutally.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Upper management is trying to make the right decisions, and they do most of the time, it seams as though they have a hard job.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    Membership Intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Intern - Anonymous Intern in Chicago, IL
    Former Intern - Anonymous Intern in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Art Institute of Chicago as an intern (more than a year)

    Pros

    Department was very welcoming, work was challenging and interesting.

    Cons

    Offices were in basement of building so underground and no windows.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good arts organization in Chicago.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Art Institute of Chicago

    Pros

    Relaxed culture, cutting-edge technology, benefits.

    Cons

    Low salaries and limited opportunities for professional growth and upward mobility.

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