About the School of Art and Design



The School of Art and Design believes your education should be as individual as you are.

Our programs in studio art and design focus on working with students to carve out their place in the larger cultural landscape where imagining the unknown and the unknowable is sustained and primary. We place high value on creativity, critical thinking, project development, community engagement and collaboration, as well as mastery of technique and craftsmanship.

In our program you will discover a faculty of art and design practitioners with diverse range of creative capabilities working alongside our students. They bring to the studio and classroom a commitment to the process of innovation and skill building as well as their range of experience as makers, collaborators, and researchers.

Our well-equipped facilities, robust national visiting artist program, university research outlets, and partnerships with regional to national cultural institutions all contribute in supporting the individual and collective growth for our students. Preparing them to be competent globally minded individuals who are capable of engaging and collaborating with professionals in a wide variety of fields and cultural contexts to assume the challenges of our times.

Printmaking student rinsing silk screen


Mission and Purpose 

The mission of the School of Art and Design at WCU is to serve as an academic program and public resource dedicated to creativity and excellence in the visual arts. By providing opportunities to learn about, experience and create art and design, the School affirms that visual art and design are an essential part of the human experience, having the power to communicate, to improve the quality of life, to challenge, to educate and to delight.  

Through teaching, professional activities and service, the School of Art and Design is committed to providing academic and cultural programs of distinction that will improve the intellectual and cultural life of the campus and engage the surrounding community. The School of Art and Design places the activities of its faculty and students in the context of a larger world, and strives for both currency within the discipline and the highest standards of excellence.  

Fundamental Purpose 

The School of Art and Design is committed to the teaching of its creative disciplines and the preparation of students for careers as artists, teachers and art/design professionals. Our primary goal is to provide the best educational experience possible for students seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees, or simply taking courses in our offered areas. We arrange activities both inside and outside the classroom that encourage creativity, critical thinking, free exchange of ideas and a commitment to productivity. The School maintains the highest standards for its faculty, who in turn set high expectations for their students.  

Our mission requires that the faculty have terminal academic degrees in their individual discipline and to be continually active in their scholarship, creative projects and other professional activities. It is the conviction of the School of Art and Design that the professional activity of faculty results in direct benefits to the students, including both currency of information and access to professional contacts. Effective faculty members must be active in their own field to ensure that their teaching is relevant to the larger world that students enter upon graduation.  

We believe in the power of art to transform both the audience and the artist. 

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