Pacific Northwest College of Art prepares students for a life of creative practice.
As Oregon’s flagship college of art and design since 1909, Pacific Northwest College of Art has helped shape Oregon’s visual arts landscape for more than a century. PNCA students study with award-winning faculty in small classes. In the last seven years, PNCA has doubled both the student body and full-time faculty, quadrupled its endowment, and added innovative undergraduate and graduate programs. PNCA is now embarking on its boldest venture yet by establishing the Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design as an anchor for the College’s vision of a new campus home on Portland’s North Park Blocks. Focusing on the transformative power of creativity, the capital campaign, Creativity Works Here, was launched in June 2012 with a lead gift from The Harold & Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation of $5 million. PNCA’s new home will be a bustling hub for creativity and entrepreneurship, reflecting the influential role of art and design in our 21st century economy – both in Portland and beyond.
PNCA students balance studies in the humanities and sciences with hands-on art making. Undergraduate students choose from ten majors and benefit from interdisciplinary collaborations throughout their fine art and design education. Eleven galleries and a nationally acclaimed museum of craft and design offer students myriad opportunities for showing their work. Farther afield, students take advantage of PNCA Global Studios in Europe, Asia, Latin America, or Africa. Our Career Services Center helps students prepare for life after college through workshops, internships, and career counseling.
In 2007, PNCA launched its first MFA program, Visual Studies, and now boasts 75 graduate students in five Graduate Programs, including an MFA in Visual Studies, an MFA in Collaborative Design, an MA Critical Theory and Creative Research, a Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies, and an MFA in Applied Craft and Design through a joint program with Oregon College of Art and Craft, the only inter-institutional degree of its kind in the country.
Complementing PNCA’s degree programs is a dynamic Continuing Education Program that provides year-round classes to more than 1,500 adults and children. Offerings range from the fundamentals of drawing and painting to master classes in printmaking, as well as Certificates in Digital Publishing, Fine Art, Graphic Design, and Illustration. PNCA’s Pre-College Studios—three-week, college-preparatory summer courses for high school students—help to prepare our community’s young people for the rigor of an art and design education. Our summer smARTworks youth camps are one-week themed workshops that guide children as they explore project topics and encourage their ideas to take form.
Programs and Degrees
Bachelor of Fine Arts in ten concentrations
Master of Fine Arts in four concentrations
Master of Arts in Critical Theory and Creative Research
Continuing Education Program
Certificate Programs in Digital Publishing, Fine Art, Graphic Design, and Illustration
MFA in Applied Craft and Design offered jointly with Oregon College of Art and Craft
MFA in Collaborative Design
MFA in Visual Studies
Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies
MA in Critical Theory and Creative Research)
Curatorial Studies (pending)
Pacific Northwest College of Art is a co-educational, nondenominational, independent college, providing professional education in the visual arts and granting the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and the Master of Fine Arts degree. It is the oldest independent college of art in the Pacific Northwest. PNCA is an accredited institutional member of both the National Association of Schools of Art and Design and the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The Council on Postsecondary Education and the U.S. Department of Education recognize both institutional accrediting bodies.
National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD)
The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
Association of Independent Colleges of Art & Design (AICAD)
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU)
Art Resources Consortium Northwest (ARC NW)
Oregon Independent College Association (OICA)
Foundations in Art: Theory and Education (FATE)
Undergraduate Students: 546
Graduate Students: 75
CE Students (annually): 1,450
Full-Time Faculty: 29
Part-Time Faculty: 70+
Student/Faculty ratio: 12 to 1
PNCA Main Campus Building, 1241 NW Johnson St.
Stagecraft Building, 1302 NW Kearney St.
Cornelia and William T.C. Stevens Studios, 1432 NW Johnson St.
MFA in Visual Studies Studios, 1830 NW 19th Ave.
MFA in Applied Craft and Design Studios at The Bison Building, 421 NE 10th Ave.
Goose Hollow Tower, Student Housing, 1630 SW Clay St.
Goose Hollow Plaza, Student Housing, 1604 SW Clay St.
Museum of Contemporary Craft, 724 NW Davis St.
The Lodge Gallery at Allied Works, 1532 SW Morrison St.
The Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design, 511 NW Broadway, Opening 2014
Museums and Galleries
Museum of Contemporary Craft
Philip Feldman Gallery + Project Space
Manuel Izquierdo Sculpture Gallery
MFA Gallery Central
Corner Gallery (Printmaking/Photography)
The Lodge Gallery @ Allied Works Architecture
Youth Programs: Classes in art fundamentals for children ages 4-17, with scholarship support for those who are economically disadvantaged.
Pre-College Program: Four week intensive summer art school program for high school youth.
I Heart Art: Portland: A pilot project representing the collaborative relationship between Etsy, PNCA, Museum of Contemporary Craft and the Portland Etsy Team; educates and supports Portland’s vibrant community of makers through professional development workshops, community salon discussions and unique networking activities.
PNCA is a nonprofit corporation authorized by the State of Oregon to offer and confer the academic degrees described herein, following a determination that state academic standards will be satisfied under OAR 583-030. Inquiries concerning the standards of school compliance may be directed to the Oregon Office of Degree Authorization, 1500 Valley River Drive, Suite 100, Eugene, Oregon, 97401.
Call or Email