Faculty Ties to Sustainability

In spring 2014 students from Architecture, Animation, Furniture, Illustration, and Industrial Design took part in the Rebranding Sustainability course.

The course is part of the college's ENGAGE at CCA educational initiative, which builds community partnerships and fosters collaborative problem solving.

Addressing a surplus of waste material donated by the Goodwill of San Francisco, students used the excess material to replicable product prototypes:

  • resin-impregnated knit furniture
  • colored rubber landscapes for plants and animals
  • wax-dipped fabric shelving
  • lead-remeditating plant baskets
  • topographic tables
  • animated films
  • fabric-acoustical wall tiles
  • striated soft-foam walls

The course was taught by Amy Campos and Lynda Grose, both of whom are leaders in sustainability in the Textiles and Fashion Design Programs, respectively.

Visit the course process blog »

See images from the opening reception »

San Francisco Tops Green City List

San Francisco leads as "greenest city in the United States," recycling 80 percent of its waste, as reported in the Huffington Post. Sustainable solutions begin in the classroom at CCA. Our faculty, alumni, and students are brainstorming new and innovative ways to protect limited resources by practicing reuse approaches that are based in science and expressed visually in art.

Ours is a unique interdisciplinary curricular initiative that students are introduced to in their first year; one that they hone and explore while attending the college; and one they apply to their careers after graduation.

Top Environmentally Responsible College

California College of the Arts is one of the most environmentally responsible colleges in the United States and Canada, according to The Princeton Review, an education service that helps students select and apply to colleges.

CCA's inclusion in The Princeton Review's Guide to Green Colleges for three years in a row (2011, 2012, 2013) reinforces the college's reputation as an exemplary institution of higher education committed to sustainability.

Read more »

Sustainability Embedded in Curricula

CCA is dedicated to fostering in our students a desire to design with sustainable resources and practices in mind. Sustainability is a cross-disciplinary topic at CCA that has been and continues to be an integral part of the college’s academic curricula and philosophical mentoring.

Many of CCA's academic programs (see partial list below) unite inspired students with knowledgeable, experienced faculty to effect positive change -- not only in terms of academic courses that tackle the issues of sustainability head on but also in developing environmentally creative solutions to these global concerns.

Fashion Design
Industrial Design
Jewelry / Metal Arts
MBA in Design Strategy

As part of its evolving curricula, CCA is launching innovative projects and bold initiatives (see below) that collectively demonstrate ours is a responsible reaction to today’s need to create art that matters.

Check out the Resources page for faculty-recommended books, videos, websites, and other tools that promote a greater awareness of environmental issues, including how to get involved.

We also invite you to follow the college's new Sustainability Blog to keep abreast of our growing number of commitments, partnerships, and accomplishments in this vital area.

See the text box on this page (top-right) to view the most recent blog entries in this category.

See also CCA Blogs



New Materials Resource Center
One of the first of its kind to exist on a college campus, CCA's new Materials Resource Center, located on the San Francisco campus, offers a wide-ranging, interdisciplinary collection of new and innovative samples, with a special interest in eco-friendly materials.

For more information, or to browse the database of available materials, visit the link above.

Watch a video tour »

CCA Libraries
Books and videos that relate to sustainability can be accessed online at the CCA Libraries online library catalog and typing "sustainability resources" into the search field.

Leadership & Advocacy

Community for Environmental Art and Design (CEAD)
CEAD is a student group whose mission is to promote environmental responsibility, dialogue, and leadership across various disciplines of arts and design at CCA.

See also student organizations

Center for Art and Public Life Student Grants
CCA students (junior standing and above) with ideas for community art and design projects in line with the Center for Art and Public Life’s guidelines of using art to address issues of social justice, diversity, community development, and education, are encouraged to submit proposals for Center Student Grants of up to $3,000 each.

For more information see Students in Action at the Center for Art and Public Life.

Public Programs & Events

CCA’s interdisciplinary approach to education ensures an ongoing conversation and lively debate on issues relevant to sustainability. From design and technology to fine art and literature, the complexities of the subject are regularly explored in many of the lectures, panels, exhibitions, and events the college offers.

See the college's events calendar for listings and descriptions of upcoming programs and events.