Channel diverse interests into your work
The Individualized Studies (INDI) program is specifically for students whose work bridges media and disciplines that fall outside regular program structures. Open to students during their second year, INDI is self-directed. You’ll combine disciplines and develop unique pathways of inquiry as you navigate the many disciplines offered at the college, from architecture and design to fine arts and writing. Four required courses, an evolving artist statement, a rationale of study, and a self-managed graduation plan form the backbone of your INDI experience.
Complement core areas of focus with outside influences
If you’re interested in one of CCA’s minors or studying abroad, the INDI program is especially useful. You’ll have the opportunity to work closely with academic advisors and faculty mentors to incorporate a range of methodologies and skills into your personalized curricula. Getting involved with both local and global communities will also help you shape a thoughtful practice grounded in critical thinking, research, and social impact.
Meet the chair
Chair Peter Simensky is an experienced educator and interdisciplinary artist. His work has been featured in solo exhibitions at Museum 52, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego; and Project Row Houses, Houston, to name a few. The recipient of numerous grants, residencies, and awards, Simensky has also been featured in group exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad. Recently, he produced work and research on the silver mining industry in Taxco, Mexico, as an artist-in-residence at La Tallera: Proyecto Siqueiros.
Design and propose your course of study
During your second year, you’ll have the opportunity to apply to become an Individualized Studies major. We look for students who are motivated and capable of working across disciplines and who have demonstrated the following:
- One or more bodies of in-progress interdisciplinary work
- Mature artist’s statement that describes the work and process
- Rationale/proposal that describes why and how Individualized Studies is the preferred course of study
The artist’s statement and rationale/proposal will continue to evolve during your required Individualized Mentorship course. When it comes to building your confidence and independence, we provide you with the guidance you need through four required courses at the sophomore, junior, and senior levels. These courses, explained below, are part of the approval process and must be taken in sequence.
Studios and campus resources
Positioned within a top art and design college, the Individualized Studies program has access to state-of-the-art studios, shops, labs, and a range of campus resources, such as the Material Reuse Center and our special collections at the Meyer and Simpson libraries, including photographic archives and historical objects. You’ll get to work with traditional craft-based methods as well as cutting-edge digital tools, exploring new possibilities for your chosen studio practice.
Think with your hands in First Year Core
Every undergraduate student participates in the First Year Core program, which provides the opportunity to explore a wide range of materials and tools. Faculty from many different disciplines guide studio projects, group critiques, and discussions on foundational theory to help set students up for success.
Transcend specific media
The Individualized Studies curriculum is designed for students working in two or three closely related areas, especially for those who explore combinations of 2D, 3D, time-based, and writing-based forms. You’ll have the freedom to choose studio courses and studio electives to develop an aesthetically mature and context-driven practice. Art and media history, critical theory, and additional humanities and sciences seminars will help you merge formal studio skills with social and political concerns.
Focus on multidisciplinary expression
Individualized Studies majors can focus their work in two or more studio areas from the list below. Or, they can focus their work in one or more studio areas and writing and literature.
Possible studio areas for Individualized Studies
- Community arts
- Fashion design
- Graphic design
- Industrial design
- Interior design
- Interaction design
- Jewelry and metal arts
- Painting and drawing
Start mapping your own arts education
Before beginning the proposal and approval process for Individualized Studies, you must meet with your academic advisor, an INDI expert, and current INDI majors at CCA. Once you’ve gathered information about the program structure and expectations, you can register for the Individualized Mentorship class during your sophomore year.
Please note that you must have completed CCA’s core curriculum. If you’re a transfer student, you must have completed at least one semester of CCA studio work. Details about the application process are available from the Individualized Major advisor in the Advising office.