Graduate Students

Graduate Student Orientation (Fall semester only)

Welcome to CCA!

California College of the Arts has enhanced the graduate-student experience:

  • development of new award-winning graduate studios and facilities
  • the augmentation of our stellar faculty body with new tenure-track faculty and international visiting artists
  • the growth of new graduate programs that provide a deep interdisciplinary dialogue for all students

We have also built many bridges with Bay Area companies and organizations to pave the way to your career after graduation.

CCA's faculty, administration, and staff expect you to be deeply engaged not only within your program but also with the other resources at the college as well as with the remarkably creative community that surrounds us.

With great anticipation, your families, friends, and campus community are preparing to welcome and support you for this important milestone.

Save the Date: 2018 Fall Orientation

  • Tuesday, August 28
  • San Francisco campus
  • New students are required to attend.

Nine Steps to a Successful Orientation

Step 1: Read the Admitted Graduate Students' Webpage 

The 10 Easy Steps to Enrollment contains comprehensive information regarding financial aid, health insurance, and more. A new student checklist is provided with instructions leading up to new student orientation.

Step 2: Activate your CCA email

Once your deposit is received, set up your CCA email address. If you have any issues with your account, Educational Technology Services can assist you.

Step 3: Activate your WebAdvisor account

You should now have full access to WebAdvisor, a web-based tool that allows you to review your academic and financial information, search for courses, emergency contacts, and update your address.

Your emergency contacts must be filled out prior to attending orientation. To do this, log in to WebAdvisor, under “Students Menu” select “User Account".

An “Emergency Contacts” link is located at the top left-hand corner of the page.

Step 4: Read CCA Laptop Initiative & Recommendations

The Student Computing Recommendations and Requirements outlines the Educational Technology Services department’s computing recommendations for all incoming students.

However, Graphic Design and Architecture students are required to comply with the CCA Laptop Initiative. Retail and discount opportunities are also available online at the CCA Computer Store.

Step 5: Determine Health Insurance Eligibility

All students who are registered in 12 or more units per semester (9 units per semester for all graduate students) are considered full-time students. They are, therefore, required to have health insurance coverage.

The college has secured a group health insurance policy (an Aetna PPO plan) that provides year-round coverage.

Part-time students are ineligible for CCA student health insurance.

Learn more: Health Insurance and Health Insurance Eligibility

Health Insurance Waiver
You may waive CCA's coverage by submitting an online waiver application before the end of the add/drop period. A student's own health insurance must meet minimum coverage requirement to qualify for an approved waiver.

Learn more: Health Insurance Waiver Application & FAQ

Step 6: Login to Workday for On-Campus Jobs & Sign-in to Handshake for Off-Campus Jobs and Internships

For on-campus work-study positions, login to Workday using your CCA user ID and password to search for and apply for jobs on-campus. The Work-Study Program affords students the opportunity for part-time employment to help defray educational costs.

For off-campus opportunities, sign-in to Handshake using your CCA email address in order to access and customize your account. Handshake contains internships and part-time positions for students and full time positions for alumni. As a CCA student, you have lifetime access to the Handshake job board. 

Workday (on-campus jobs)
Hanshake (off-campus jobs and internships)

Step 7: Read the Student Handbook

The Student Handbook serves as a guide to the programs, policies, procedures, requirements, and resources of CCA.

Students are strongly encouraged to read the entire handbook.

Step 8: Take the Pre-Orientation Survey

Share what you know about CCA, so we can improve orientation! Students who complete the pre-orientation survey (and post-) will receive a gift and an opportunity to enter into a drawing!

Step 9: Join Graduate Student Alliance (GSA) on Facebook

Graduate Student Alliance directors are fellow students who play an integral role in advocating and funding events for the graduate student community.

Add "CCA GSA" to your Facebook page and get connected with other current CCA graduate students.

Step 10: Participate in the MFA Fine Arts New Look Exhibition

Sign up to participate in this year's MFA Fine Arts New Look Exhibition at the CCA Hubbell Street Galleries in San Francisco. This annual exhibition serves as an opportunity for incoming graduate students to introduce themselves and their work to the CCA community. The exhibition will include a celebratory reception on Thursday, September 6, 2018 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. More information is available on or email  


Email more info about graduate student orientation.

Contact your desired graduate program directly for program-specific information.