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Samantha Brown

Samantha Brown
B.A. in Africana Studies, Minor in Dance, Oberlin College

 Area(s) of Interest: 

Music, Visual arts, Fine arts, Performing arts, Theatre, Dance, Arts/music festivals, Nonprofit work, Entrepreneurship


During my junior year at Oberlin, I was working as an event producer for the college’s Student Union Programming Committee. I brought hip-hop icon, Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def), to perform for the campus and town and booked several student acts to open the show. The event was pulled together in just under a month after Oberlin’s community experienced a string of racist and hate-inspired events. I chose to respond to the events that were happening in this way because of my personal relationship to the arts, and the power that I believe live art in particular has in bringing diverse groups of people together. The success of the event went far beyond my expectations because professors, townspeople, and students from all demographics and backgrounds were in attendance together, enjoying a one-of-a-kind musical moment. This was the first time I experienced the transformative power of curating an event with community-building and healing intentions.

Ideal Job in 10 Years:

Director of partnerships and community engagement at The South Side Center for Black Dance and Creative Communities (South Side Dance Center).

What led you to enroll in the MSLCE program at Northwestern?

The first half of 2022 left me feeling drained and uninspired, both professionally and personally, so I decided to sign up for the July info session without realizing that it was finally the right time to attend. On that Wednesday afternoon, I discovered that the MSLCE program is beyond perfect for me. Not only would it help me navigate the critical juncture I’ve arrived at in my career and my life, I realized that MSLCE combines possibilities for me to explore my leadership potential, appeals to my curiosity about alternative career trajectories for arts entrepreneurs, and quenches my thirst for new professional connections.

What are you most looking forward to about the MSLCE program?

I am most excited to experience the “Economics of Creative Enterprises” course. To be transparent, economics was not my strong suit in undergrad, and I had to work more diligently at math/anything with numbers than I did with writing or more creative subjects.. But I have a feeling that learning about economics in the context of creative enterprise specifically will help me grasp these concepts differently, and that I’ll have a new outlook on the business side of things by this time next year!

If you could have lunch with one person (living or dead), who would it be? 

If I could, I would want to have lunch with my great-grandfather, Samuel Kott. He passed away before I was born, but I’d love to speak with him because he is the person I am named after. From the little information that I do know about him, he was an entrepreneur and came to the U.S. from Palestine before Israel was established. I would love the opportunity to talk with him about that from an identity perspective, but I’d also like to talk to him about his business and entrepreneurship journey because I believe he is part of where my creative drive and self-starting energy comes from.

If you had to describe yourself in three words, they would be… 

Passionate, collaborative, and radiant