Value of Arts Education Confirmed in Major National Surveys

CCA's Annual Career Expo helps students and alumni launch their careers

“Leadership and problem solving can be applied to every facet in life, and that is what arts training at CCA is. Progressive.”

This is one of several positive comments from CCA alumni who participated in the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP) 2012 survey.

The SNAAP survey results were released in a recent report that details findings from more than 65,000 arts alumni of all ages from 120 institutions in the United States and Canada.

Participating schools include public and private institutions: research universities, colleges of art and design, conservatories, liberal arts colleges, and arts high schools.

CCA Alumni Find Career Satisfaction and Success

The SNAAP survey was taken by 1,329 CCA alumni (977 undergraduate, 352 graduate).

Here are some CCA-specific highlights:

  • 93% of CCA alumni rated their overall experience at CCA as “good” or “excellent”
  • 84% found work within one year of graduation or went on to graduate school
  • 81% of recent grads would recommend CCA to other students
  • 82% have worked or currently work as professional artists
  • 81% of those working have job satisfaction
  • 77% say that their job reflects their personality, values, and interests
  • 1 in 3 CCA alumni are engaged in the community, volunteer in an arts organization, or volunteer to teach the arts

Note: Data is from CCA undergraduate alumni. Graduate results varied only slightly.

Good Return on Investment

In addition to having a positive educational experience and finding satisfaction in the workplace, CCA alumni are getting a good return on the investment (ROI) they made in their education.

According to PayScale, a compensation data company, California College of the Arts ranks second in return on investment among US art and design schools.

PayScale’s 2013 College Education ROI Rankings report ranked more than 1,000 U.S. colleges and universities to determine the potential financial return of attending each school given the cost of tuition and the payoff in median lifetime earnings associated with each school.

CCA Top US Art School for Career Success

California College of the Arts ranks first among art and design schools in the country for alumni with the highest-paying jobs, according to PayScale in its 2013-14 College Salary Report.

The annual report ranks undergraduate degrees and schools by postgraduation salary potential. In the Bay Area, CCA ranks fifth (behind Stanford University; University of California, Berkeley; Santa Clara University; and Saint Mary's College of California).



SNAAP is a collaboration between the Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research and the Vanderbilt University Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy. Participation in the annual survey is open to all degree-granting colleges and universities as well as arts high schools.

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