Starting the Art School search

<p>After having done a college search for my two older children, it is time to start the process for my junior D, who has quite an interest and affinity for art. She shows interest and ability in many different areas however, including drawing, painting, clay sculpture, fashion and photo. She is interested in some sort of design career but has no idea what. </p>

<p>She wants to attend an art school, not a liberal arts college with an art major. She has done one pre-college program (and loved it) and will do another this summer. </p>

<p>D is fixated on MICA, because she has heard that a student does not have to focus on any one area immediately and can proceed more eclectically (this is the concern with RISD, for example). We would prefer for her to stay on the east coast, but are open to other ideas of flexible programs for kids with many interests who have not chosen or do not know their exact path yet. </p>

<p>She is also an excellent student with a 3.8 GPA and has won a number of scholastic art awards.</p>

<p>Thank you for ideas!</p>

<p>My D applied to a few art schools. SVA in Manhattan offered her a very generous scholarship even though we did not apply for FA. I would suggest looking into it.
She also applied to RISD even though she’s not sure she likes the aspects of the foundation year, she likes the idea that she may explore some humanities courses at Brown.
Good luck in your research.</p>

<p>Mica is a wonderful school with a flexible program, something I liked but my dd did not care, as she knows exactly what she wants. Have you visited? That may really help you. Tyler Art School at Temple is also a very well thought of school, with many majors and a BFA program. RIT also has a good solid program as does Syracuse. As universities, there might be more ability to take classes outside the art school, as they are closer. At Mica, you are allowed to go to Johns Hopkins, but I don’t know how realistic that is. Good luck and start visiting, it really helps when you see the facilities for the different schools.</p>



<p>Generally all art schools do not require undergraduates to declare a Major the first year during which time your daughter can better acquaint herself with her the different programs at the school. </p>

<p>If she does not declare for her second year, she can probably work with academic advising to sample a few course in different majors with the goal off using them as electives once she chooses a major. The potential problem with this method is that it could take her 5 years to graduate because she may be off track and not able to take the courses as they are offered sequentially. </p>

<p>Bottom line is…talk to academic advising at different schools to determine the best fit. Some may be more flexible than others. Don’t rely on word of mouth.</p>

<p>I went to a liberal arts school and was an art major. I purposely avoided art school. Now for additional graduate studies that is where I am headed. If you find the right one, (like a small liberal arts school in St. Pete) it can be an amazing experience which can provide more opportunities than a specified art school. I have found the attitude in liberal arts to be " what would you like to learn, here are some options" whereas art school presents “we are not here to teach you, keep going”</p>

<p>To start art school search… decide… BFA, BA, or BFA/BA. That is sorta the top level choice you need to make.</p>

<p>BFA: Art=70%, other=30%
BA: Art 30%, other=70% (sometimes 40/60, depends on school)
BFA/BA: 5 years instead of 4, 50%/50%</p>

<p>If you have the money and the time and the grades/SAT’s… the BFA/BA gives you the most bang-for-buck in my opinion especially if you go to strong school. You have a degree from which you can head to a pure-art-world OR go on towards marketing or busines or lots of other things… BUT it is not a 100% bet-on-your-art-and-follow-your-heart thing so it is not right for everyone.</p>

<p>Sounds like your daughter is focused on an “Art School” but… even knowing that… something like the Tufts/SMFA program should at least be looked at since they have a BFA/BA program where the BFA is really “from” the pure “Art School” so you have that focus and… frankly… you can always just transfer to be a pure SMFA student later… So i’d try to get her to at least look at pure art schools with a strong connection to a liberal arts school (and then at least the liberal art classes she needs to take will be better). <<note: don’t="" believe="" them="" if="" they="" tell="" you="" that="" mica="" has="" a="" strong="" program="" with="" johns="" hopkins…="" is="" an="" illusion="">></note:></p>

<p>Another dimension to strongly consider is location location location. For ART, as compared with most other majors, location really might matter. If your daughter focuses in on “painting” or other fine arts… then it is hard-to-beat a school in NY where you can know and be known by every important gallery etc etc etc</p>

<p>My list would include:
Pratt I.
Parsons / Eugene Lang

<p>Delta66- my D is currently a junior at MICA and loves it. She too started out “fixated on MICA” but took a long journey and applied to many schools before she narrowed it down. She had thought she would want a BFA/BA or something similar and applied to art schools as well as liberal arts colleges and larger universities. </p>

<p>The Baltimore college town consortium and MICA’s ongoing relationship with JHU helped her decide to go there. Currently, they have a BFA/BA program with the BA being in “humanistic studies”. I know they collaborate in other ways too, for example the fiber people at MICA work with scientists from JHU and people from Under Armor to develop “smart textiles”. They also work with the military on this, trying to innovate textiles that can work as a sensor for a body’s temperature, blood pressure, etc. </p>

<p>My daughter is currently a fiber major but started out as a painting major. She was interested in the humanistic studies program but now wants to have minors or concentrations (I can’t remember the difference) in graphic design and something else. MICA offers a good number of majors so that is helpful and there are 12 or so schools in the Baltimore consortium that she could also take classes at. The shuttles between the closer, in-town schools run all the time. She’s taken one class at JHU so far and it was pretty easy to arrange. </p>

<p>I would recommend that your daughter consider art schools that have many undergraduate majors since she may likely change her mind after the exposure of foundation year. Don’t forget good public U’s like VCU and U of Cincinnati. WUSTL also offers joint degrees that include the BFA and I believe Cornell does also. Still, there’s nothing like the concentration and intensity of a dedicated art school!</p>

<p>Have you considered SCAD? It’s an amazing school. Really a dream school for a lot of art-lovers, although it’s pretty pricey. Check it out!
[SCAD</a> > The University for Creative Careers](<a href=“]SCAD”></p>