The Success of SAM


November 22nd proved to be an excellent day for a student arts market. Leading up to the event the five of us had worked hard to spread the word. Flyers had been posted all around campus and the community. Emails had been sent, Facebook posts were happening multiple times a day and our website gave the instant impression of a cozy fall day. We were interviewed and featured in the State Press and East Valley Tribune along with being included in Jeff McMahon’s cultural calendar. It took a few day’s after opening up to receive artist submissions before we got some response. All of our hypothesizing and data collecting had shown that student artists need a place to sell their work and someone else to organize the event. When we weren’t getting a strong response from artists to submit to sell their work at the student arts market we got nervous. It wasn’t long, however, until the theories from effectual entrepreneurship and the idea of lowering risk by canvasing and data gathering came to fruition. Our total artist submission reached 25. The market featured a wide variety of photography, knit scarves and hats, comics, piggy banks, duct tape bags and wallets, jewelry, dresses and paintings. I was able to do half of my Christmas shopping at the market! Casey Moore’s was an excellent location for the market and they were an incredible partner to have. They were extremely supportive and enthusiastic from the first pitch. They strongly support the arts and student endeavors. We felt happy to hear that they likewise greatly appreciated this partnership. Things were rolling and when the opening of the student arts market came around at 2 pm the sun was shinning, our artists were excited, our tables were ready and our signs and balloons were hung. By 2:10 our first three sales had been made! I loved walking around and seeing the student art and engaging in conversation with them about their work. I enjoyed some delicious fish and chips from Casey Moore’s. My biggest highlight was working with my fantastic classmates. Everyone contributed greatly and I was surrounded by incredible talent. Early on in the semester we had recognized that as a group we highly value helping artists support themselves. Seeing SAM happen gave us great satisfaction. It is easy to say that the first event of SAM was perfect. Our customers were happy and spent a lot of time getting to know the artists. Our artists were happy and able to sell their work. After everything was cleaned up and taken down we finalized the books. The result was that not only did we break even but we made a small profit. SAM was an absolute success! Thanks to Linda and her arts entrepreneurship class, classmates with vision and compassion, artists with drive, Casey Moore’s with extreme generosity and a community with a growing desire to support the arts I have come away from this experience with greater confidence in my ability to bring about success in the arts market. You can’t put a price on that!


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