This is our mission statement—and our answer to how art and design impact our global society. Part call-to-action. Part promise. All opportunity.
ArtCenter’s visionary approach to art and design education is based on the College’s conservatory-like approach to teaching and learning; a desire for rich, intercultural and transdisciplinary dialogue; and a mandate to provide students innovative learning and making spaces.
Even with the challenges of today—including a global pandemic, coming to terms with issues of social justice, and the changing landscape of higher education—ArtCenter’s future is full of possibility. And to realize that possibility, the College is intent on improving access, affordability and inclusion in a meaningful way. These values have been the driving force in much of our planning and will continue to inform the College’s development for years to come.
For the past decade, the College has twice authored a strategic plan, Create Change 1.0 (2011–2016) and Create Change 2.0 (2017–2021), to focus our collective efforts, guide our decision-making and inform our allocation of resources. Our strategic plans have always been community-driven, reflecting input from students, faculty, staff, alumni, industry partners and trustees—all with the goal of maintaining ArtCenter’s position as a leading art and design school in the 21st century.
Though we recognize at this moment a vision of access, affordability and inclusion that could easily occupy us for a decade or more, we are deliberately limiting our current efforts to a two-year “agenda” toward that longer-term goal. It is a strategic agenda, moreover, that builds on the accomplishments of our previous five-year strategic plans and sets the College up for success in the near future.
ArtCenter's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan is predicated on our belief that multiple points of view, life experiences, ethnicities, cultures and belief systems are essential to academic and creative excellence. While that important work continues, our strategic agenda reaffirms and expands upon issues related to student and faculty recruitment and retention. Specifically, the College is methodically expanding the ways we recruit BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) faculty and increasing diversity within our student body through increased recruitment and scholarships.
Today’s students—and tomorrow’s—require flexible education models that can be shaped around busy schedules and geographic boundaries, allow for different levels of learning and skill-building, and result in qualifications that align with their creative and career objectives. The College will build on the strength of its degree programs, enhance its non-degree programs, and continue to develop its online offerings while allowing for new learning opportunities and the ways in which completion is recognized, adding educational intensives, certificates and badges to ArtCenter’s educational portfolio.
ArtCenter has been reimagining our economic operational model to help mitigate against tuition dependency. Extending beyond the current ArtCenter experience, this initiative is called the “Third Horizon” and encompasses bold ideas about new educational offerings for new markets, new revenue streams to support our programs, and new cost structures to reduce traditional expenses. To date, two specific ideas have gained traction within our community, including executive education, and international and domestic hubs through which the College can offer an array of programs to new audiences.
Major strategic initiatives are introduced above. Please review the full strategic agenda for tactics and additional details.