Our plans for the fall 2021 semester

We are excited to share the good news that we are already beginning our return to use of our campuses.

We look forward to welcoming our incoming class to campus this fall, while offering flexibility for circumstances affecting travel or health considerations. As we begin to open access to campus spaces for our students, faculty, and staff, the college will continue to act per the guidelines of state and local health officials and make decisions that prioritize student, staff, and faculty health and safety. In our planning, we’ve created a flexible framework that allows us to move forward thoughtfully and adjust as deemed necessary.

A return to creating on campus

At CCA, we uphold the value of hands-on learning, practicing by doing, and in-studio mentorship, so we have been thoughtful in ways to achieve this under the circumstances brought about by the COVID–19 pandemic. CCA staff have been hard at work imagining and building new spaces that allow for enhanced health and safety standards, including larger making spaces for more physical distancing and increased air circulation.

Using existing outdoor campus space in San Francisco and taking advantage of the temperate California climate, we are proud to announce the opening of a new outdoor maker space on CCA’s Backlot for instruction and “studio” work. Improving local public health conditions, have also allowed a limited reopening of indoor studio spaces for graduating seniors and graduate students by reservation.

Instruction of classes and class schedules

We are very much looking forward to seeing you here at CCA in August to begin the 2021–2022 academic year. To make that happen, we are developing a new fall schedule that will rely on hybrid instruction to support making as well as the most vibrant aspects of campus life while still safeguarding the health of our community. Additionally, we understand that individual circumstances may prevent a student from being able to travel to San Francisco or partake in in-person instruction as soon as this fall, so we will continue to offer the full breadth of First Year coursework via online instruction. While we will offer this for the upcoming semester, students should also expect that this is a temporary option with the plans to eventually return to on-campus learning for all.

We are offering courses instructed via two formats:

Hybrid – A class taught partially in-person and partially online with both meetings in real-time and content that is delivered in pre-recorded format for students to read or watch at their own time and pace.

  • Lectures and demonstrations are pre-recorded
  • Critique and feedback are given live via Zoom, shared voice recordings, or written
  • Classes also meet in-person for some discussions, field trips, and studio work

Online – A class taught fully online, with both virtual meetings in real-time and content that is delivered in pre-recorded format; students can read or watch this content at their own time and pace.

  • Lectures and demonstrations are pre-recorded
  • Critique and feedback are given live via Zoom, shared voice recordings, or written
  • Class discussions are hosted live via Zoom, weekly one to two hours

Students that join us on campus this fall should anticipate class schedules with a mix of instruction formats; not all classes in a student’s schedule will be delivered via hybrid instruction. Students should expect to complete humanities and sciences courses via online instruction in order to reduce student density on campus. Students who are coming to campus will have an integrated schedule, meaning that they will have some hybrid classes and some online classes. Incoming first-year students who are unable to travel to and live on campus this fall will still have the option for a full schedule of classes with online instruction.

Admitted student appointments

There is a lot of information to cover, so we’re making time to meet with every admitted student individually. All admitted students should meet with an admissions counselor, who will go over the following information and answer your questions:

  • The CCA experience, programs of study, career opportunities, and general information
  • How to review your financial aid awards and the financial aid petition process
  • CCA’s plans for the fall semester and how to indicate your preferred mode of instruction for fall 2021 (hybrid in-person/online)
  • How to connect with CCA’s online communities and attend virtual Admitted Student Events

Transfer students will have an additional appointment to go over their transfer credits and academic plan. Transfer students will be emailed individually to schedule this second appointment when their preliminary academic plan is ready and we are ready to meet with them.

Incoming first year students who have already submitted their enrollment deposit will be receiving information about reviewing their academic plan after April 15. CCA will be registering all new first-year students for their first semester of classes. We will also be happy to review their next steps on the cca.edu/enroll page.

Important enrollment dates

May 1 – Deadline for admitted students to make an enrollment deposit to confirm attendance for fall
June 15 – Last day to communicate mode of instruction preference for fall 2021 semester (fall course registration will be finalized based on your response)
August 1 – First tuition payment is due (set up a payment plan by this date)
August 23 – Fall 2021 Welcome Week
September 1 – First day of classes

Housing and dining are open and serving students

We have kept campus housing open by following strict health and safety guidelines, including pre-move-in testing as well as a quarantine period to ensure safety upon move-in.

All incoming first-year and transfer students who plan to have any presence on campus in fall 2021 for hybrid instruction will be required to live on campus, per CCA’s live-on residency policy. After students make their enrollment deposit, they will be able to access the housing application. The housing application priority deadline for new incoming students is May 15.

Students may request a roommate of their choice at the time of filling out their housing application. Final assignment of single versus double occupancy will depend on the San Francisco Department of Public Health. Roommate preferences will be collected in advance, in preparation for double occupancy to be allowed. If the health order is restricted to single occupancy, you will not have a roommate unless you opt in.

Our new dining facility, Makers Cafe, opened last fall, serving students healthy, varied, and made-from-scratch meals, conveniently and safely prepared for pre-order or grab-and-go. Students can take their meals to-go or enjoy them in the outdoor seating of the Founders Hall courtyard. We will continue to evaluate conditions and adjust housing and dining policies as necessary to safely welcome our fall 2021 residents.

Important CCA housing dates

May 15 – Housing application and license agreement due
Mid-June – Room and roommate assignments will be emailed to students who completed the registration and agreement by the deadline
July 10–August 20 – At this time, students have the opportunity to upgrade their meal plan if desired
August 21–22 – Residence hall move-in weekend

Health and safety updates

Visiting campus

In order to protect our staff and students currently on campus, and in accordance with local public health guidance to minimize non-essential travel, we are currently not able to accommodate guests visiting our campus. We regret that we can’t tour you around our campuses in person, but we offer the ability to virtually walk through campus with one of our student ambassadors on a guided virtual tour.


As of April 15, 2021, anyone age 16 and older in California is eligible to get the COVID–19 vaccine by scheduling an appointment. Vaccines are free and open to anyone in the U.S., irrespective of citizenship or health insurance provider, but subject to availability. CCA highly encourages everyone to get vaccinated before arriving to campus in the fall.

We understand that vaccines are not widely available in all places, so CCA is not currently enforcing a requirement for students to be vaccinated to attend for the fall semester, but we strongly recommend students make an appointment once they get to San Francisco. Education employees are currently eligible for the COVID–19 vaccine in San Francisco, and many staff and faculty have begun to be vaccinated. For more information, please see CCA’s Health + Wellness page on Portal for information regarding student health insurance and additional COVID–19 resources.

Meet with us and stay informed!

CCA’s Enrollment Management leadership team will continue to host monthly virtual meetings on the first Thursday of each month, to share updates about the college’s return-to-campus plan and any related new health and safety information. Mark your calendar now; you’ll receive an email invite with the Zoom link to attend a week before each event.

  • May 6 – 4 pm and 7 pm PT
  • June 3 – 4 pm and 7 pm PT

For more information, email [email protected].