Grow your skills in a region with worldwide influence
California College of the Arts admits students from around the world who are driven, diverse, original, socially conscious cultural-transformation-makers committed to changing the world and themselves through art and design. We think you’ll fit right in here.
Launch your creative career at CCA
At CCA, you’ll be immersed in the pioneering spirit that makes the San Francisco Bay Area so legendary. You’ll learn from experienced artists, architects, designers, and writers continually engaged with the modern challenges and opportunities in your field (88% of our faculty are professional practitioners). The strong mentorship culture at CCA is bolstered by our 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio, with an average of only 10 students per class.
Our undergraduate students (1,500 strong!) embrace risk-taking and are fueled by CCA’s Chimera spirit. The Chimera, a mythical creature made up of many diverse parts, is our unofficial mascot and represents a mindset that believes we’re better together. In fact, CCA was ranked sixth on Niche’s 2020 list of the most diverse colleges in the U.S.
The range of ideas, people, and creative practices on campus will give your work intelligence and depth, while our Career Development team will provide access to tools, events, networking opportunities, and a CCA job and internship board beginning your first year on campus. According to our survey of recent alumni, 78% of undergraduates work in a field related to their CCA training.
Together, our interdisciplinary community understands the evolution of creative economies and their increasingly important role in solving social, cultural, environmental, and economic problems. And we want you to be part of it—starting now.
The CCA student experience
Your experience will be truly groundbreaking
CCA was founded in 1907 by a gamechanger of the time named Frederick Meyer, and today, we’re making another bold move: The college is currently expanding the San Francisco campus, uniting our academic programs in one location by 2022. We’ve added two new buildings, transformed into a residential campus with a new dining hall and rooms for 500+ students, and are creating hybrid making spaces that will enable our interdisciplinary mission like never before.
You’ll be among the first to benefit from this unique environment, building your creative community right in the center of campus. The contributions you make during your time at CCA will help define what a socially engaged, sustainable art and design practice looks like in the future.
Due to the COVID–19 pandemic, we’ve unfortunately canceled all of our in-person 2020 Admitted Student events; however, we've created virtual opportunities to honor your acceptance to CCA and answer your questions. We’re sorry we can’t celebrate with you in person but we look forward to seeing you online at the following live virtual sessions:
- Tuesday May 12, 5pm PT – First Year Core (Virtual!) Studios
First Year Program Chair Erik Scollon talks about the successes seen and lessons learned from this Spring's transition to online integrated learning. He'll share how the core studio courses have surprisingly benefitted from the new platform and how CCA is ahead of the game for fall instruction. We have a plan for creating a fall schedule of online courses that will work for every major, and in every time zone!
- Monday, May 18, 5 pm PT – Join us live fo a Q&A with Housing, Dining, and Residential Education
At 5 pm PT, the offices of Housing, Dining, and Residential Education will be joining us live to answer your questions about dorm rooms, dining plans, and to talk about what life is going to be like living on campus at CCA
Chat with a CCA Program Chair
Every Thursday, we are sitting down with the heads of our academic programs to find out about all the amazing features of the courses and their faculty.
- Thursday May 14, 5pm PT – Ceramics and Glass programs Interim Chair Kari Marboe, Sculpture Chair Peter Simensky, Textiles Chair Josh Faught, and Metal + Jewelry Arts Co-Chair Curtis Arima
- Thursday May 21, 5pm PT – Photography Chair Chris Johnson, Printmedia Chair Michelle Murillo, and Film Co-Chair Brook Hinton
- Thursday May 28, 5pm PT – Writing + Literature Associate Chair Eric Olson and History of Art and Visual Culture Chair Elizabeth Mangini
Check your email for invitations with the links to join these events. All sessions will include an opportunity to ask questions via chat, so be sure to log on to participate.
View recordings of prior virtual events
Did you miss a meetup, want to share a presentation with your family, or need to follow up on something you heard during a virtual Admitted Student Event? We recorded them for you! Below are links to view previously recorded events and presentations.
- Meet our CCA campus partners (March 31, 2020)
- International Student Affairs Information Session (April 3, 2020)
- Housing, Dining, and Residential Education Q&A (April 6, 2020)
- Campus life panel for parents and families (April 14, 2020)
- Student life panel (April 14, 2020)
- Virtual Student Panel with International Students at CCA (April 17, 2020)
- Q&A with CCA alumni (April 20, 2020)
- Career Development Information Session for Transfer Students (April 22, 2020)
- Admitted Fall 2020 Parent Info Session with First Year Program Chair Erik Scollon (May 13, 2020)
- Admitted international student presentations
Chat with a CCA program chair and faculty sessions
- Associate Chair of First Year Program Carol Elkovich (April 2, 2020)
- Architecture Chair Antje Steinmuller (April 9, 2020)
- Graphic Design Chair Rachel Berger (April 16, 2020)
- Painting + Drawing Chair Linda Geary (April 23, 2020)
- Interior Design Chair Amy Campos (April 28, 2020)
- Illustration Chair Owen Smith (April 30, 2020)
- Fashion Design faculty Gregory Climer (May 7, 2020)
- Animation faculty Meg Bisineer and Christoph Steger (May 7, 2020)
Take a virtual tour of CCA
Though we’re sorry we won’t able to greet you on campus and show you around in person, you can still connect with CCA from wherever you are.
Review all your information
We’re excited to have you join CCA, but we know coming to college is a big decision, for both you and your family. That’s why we ensure you can understand all aspects of your offer—information you’ll need as you make your decision whether to accept.
The admissions offer you received indicates the semester we’d like you to start attending CCA. You can also review your financial aid, review your transfer credits, and explore your housing options online. If you have any questions along the way, reach out to our teams for answers.
If you already know you’d like to accept your offer and attend CCA, awesome! You can submit your enrollment deposit now and get started with the next steps.
Economic diversity is integral to CCA
To view your financial aid offer online, log in to the CCA Undergraduate Applicant Page, click on View My Financial Aid Packages, and click on your program for the 2020–2021 aid year.
If you have any requirements to complete your financial aid application (for example, if you have been selected for verification), you can also view and upload documentation on the CCA Undergraduate Applicant Page by clicking on My Financial Aid Requirements.
Invest in your future
Transfer students make valuable contributions to CCA
To view your transfer credit online, log in to the CCA Undergraduate Applicant Page, click on Apply for Undergraduate Admissions to CCA, and select your completed application. Scroll down to the section labeled Reports and click to view your Preliminary Transfer Credit Report.
Make connections and thrive
Opening fall 2020 in the center of our San Francisco campus, our newest residence hall will be home to most of CCA’s first- and second-year resident students. You’ll live on campus for your first two years and have access to on-site social events, counseling services, and residential programming—and a meal plan centered in our brand new cafe—which make it easier to get to know your peers, your neighbors, and yourself. Recent residence hall activities include:
- Language Lounges
- “Know the Bay” Group Trips
- Resident Advisor Socials
- Reverse Trick or Treat
- Welcome Week
- Meet + Greets
Here’s a roundup of housing accommodations available to you as a first-year, second-year, or new transfer student at CCA. You’ll receive more information on how to apply to live in one of these residence halls after you submit your enrollment deposit.
Be among the first to live here. Our newest residence hall at 188 Hooper Street opens in fall 2020.
- 500 students (first- and second-year students)
- Located on CCA’s San Francisco campus, Founders Hall's doors open directly into a courtyard that connects to first-year studios next door
- Building features include a cafe for student meal plans, a convenience store, bike space, top-floor terrace, and modern sustainable amenities
- Double occupancy and single occupancy rooms
View the San Francisco campus and skyline from this state-of-the-art building and residential community, which opened to students in 2019.
- 200 students (continuing students and transfer students)
- Two city blocks from CCA’s San Francisco campus
- Building features include ground-floor retail space, outdoor courtyards, and a large community gathering space
- Limited single occupancy rooms, and suite-style apartments with furnished four-bedroom and eight-person units (assigned as doubles)
CCA students share this 12-story building with students from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
- 190 students (continuing students and transfer students)
- Two blocks from BART and Muni metro station, one block from CCA shuttle; 1.2 miles from San Francisco campus (10-minute bike ride)
- Building features include stainless steel appliances, flat screen TVs in each unit, soundproof engineering, and a bike storage/repair station
- Two-person studios and four-person suites
Declare your intent to attend by June 1
Your journey as a CCA student starts with your intent to enroll. To do this and confirm your attendance at CCA, submit the $300 enrollment deposit by June 1, 2020—or within two weeks of receiving your admission offer—using the link below. You’ll need to enter the student ID number provided in your offer of admission to complete the non-refundable deposit, which is used to cover registration fees ($115) and enrollment ($185).
Select housing, a dining plan, and more
After you’ve made your enrollment deposit, it’s time to follow the Enrollment Checklist, which includes obtaining your I-20 and F-1 visa (if you’re an international student), applying for campus housing, selecting your dining plan, registering for classes, and preparing to attend orientation.
Don’t miss these moments in the enrollment process
Be sure to plan accordingly—mark your calendar now and make travel arrangements in advance.
Our teams are here to help
With your acceptance to CCA, you’ve achieved the first step toward academic, artistic, and personal fulfillment—enjoy it! We know that the next steps and the cost of tuition may seem overwhelming at first, but with our dedicated teams of counselors, you have someone who can answer any questions every step of the way.
We can talk you through your admission offer, schedule a visit to campus, and more. View our team’s contact information to find your counselor by region or student type.
For questions regarding housing opportunities, residential hall security, or submitting your housing application, email [email protected].
Reach out to us with any financial aid or payment-related questions—from how to understand your award package to how to submit a payment. You can also email [email protected], call +1 415-703-9528, or view our Financial Aid team if you need additional support.