Pacific Northwest College of Art

Pacific Northwest College of Art is a private, non-profit art and design college. Founded in 1909 in Portland, Oregon, PNCA offers eleven Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) degrees, seven graduate degrees including Master of Fine Arts (MFA) and Master of Arts (MA) degrees, a Minor, a Post-Baccalaureate, and a range of Community Education programs for adults and youth.

PNCA by the Numbers

11 undergraduate majors in art and design
1 minor
areas of study
graduate degrees in the Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies
Post-Baccalaureate program

549 students total from 

42 states and 10 countries

Undergraduate Students 

111 Graduate Students

26 PNCA | PENSOLE Intensive Students

1,400 Community Education Students of all ages each year

94 total faculty members

to 1 student to faculty ratio

700 free public programs each year

Programs and Degrees

Undergraduate Programs

Animated Arts
Graphic Design
Creative Writing
General Fine Arts
Video and Sound

Graduate Programs

MFA in Visual Studies
MFA in Collaborative Design
MA in Design Systems
MFA in Print Media Low-Residency
MFA in Visual Studies
MA in Critical Studies
MFA in Applied Craft and Design
offered jointly with Oregon College of Art and Craft

Community Education Programs for adults and youth
Community Education Certificate Programs in Communication Design, Graphic Design, Illustration, and Drawing + Painting


Arlene and Harold Schnitzer Center for Art and Design
511 NW Broadway

Glass Building (January 2019)
2139 N Kerby
Graduate studios and 3D shops and labs (wood, metals, ceramics, soft sculpture, moldmaking, glass kilns)

MFA in Applied Craft + Design Studios 
The Bison Building, 421 NE 10th Avenue

ArtHouse student housing
33 NW Park Avenue

The Lodge Gallery at Allied Works
1532 SW Morrison Street

Free Public Programs

PNCA and our Center for Contemporary Art & Culture present hundreds of free public programs each year. The public is welcomed to lectures by internationally-recognized artists and curators, innovative scholars, activists, designers, and philosophers. We host hackathons, panel discussions, community celebrations, and more. 

Each First Thursday, we welcome the entire Portland community to join us for opening receptions for CCA&C and student exhibitions, performances, and pop-up shops.

Upcoming Events


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, the Master of Fine Arts degree and the Master of 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.

Accredited by

National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD)

The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)

PNCA is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Accreditation of an institution of higher education by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities indicates that it meets or exceeds criteria for the assessment of institutional quality evaluated through a peer review process. An accredited college or university is one which has available the necessary resources to achieve its stated purposes through appropriate educational programs, is substantially doing so, and gives reasonable evidence that it will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Institutional integrity is also addressed through accreditation.
 Accreditation by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities is not partial but applies to the institution as a whole. As such, it is not a guarantee of every course or program offered, or the competence of individual graduates. Rather, it provides reasonable assurance about the quality of opportunities available to students who attend the institution.

Inquiries regarding an institution’s accredited status by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities should be directed to the administrative staff of the institution. Individuals may also contact:
Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities 
8060 165th Avenue N.E., Suite 100 
Redmond, WA 98052 
(425) 558‐4224 

Accreditation by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities refers to the institution as a whole. Therefore, statements like “fully accredited” or “this program is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities” or “this degree is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities” are incorrect and should not be used.


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)
National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) College Navigator 

Nonprofit Statement

Pacific Northwest College of Art 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.

Enrollment and Degree Verification

PNCA has authorized the National Student Clearinghouse to provide enrollment and degree verifications. The National Student Clearinghouse can be contacted at: Web: Mail: National Student Clearinghouse, 2300 Dulles Station Boulevard, Suite 300, Herndon, VA 20171

Visit us

We welcome visitors to our main campus building on Portland's Pearl District on the North Park Block.