Opportunities & Careers

Our graduates have received national and international recognition of their work, and have established a variety of successful creative practices, all linked by an investment in making.

Featured Alumni

Bukola Koiki '15

Project manager, Scout Books. Featured in Art Practical , Art:21 Materialities: Contemporary Textile Arts. c3:initiative + Pulp & Deckle Papermaking Residency & Exhibition. 2016 RACC Professional Development Grant. AICAD Teaching Fellowship at Maine College of Art.

Kyla Mucci '13

Sole recipient, Surface Design Association's Graduate Creative Promise Award 2012. Designer/weaver, Pendleton. Founder, Pastoral Textiles.

Andreas Kindler von Knobloch '16

Awarded MFA AC+D Post Graduate Fellowship. Solo show at Mermaid Arts Center in Dublin, Ireland, and upcoming group show at Project Arts Centre, Dublin, Ireland.

Eric Trine '13

Sight Unseen's American Design Hot List. Exhibited in Design Milk's East, Meet West Showcase, NY, West Coast Craft , San Francisco.Featured in Apartment Therapy, Dwell, Gray Magazine.

Laura Allcorn '11

Nominated for Design To Improve Life Index Award. Senior content strategist, Second Story. Featured in Portland Mercury, GOOD, Wired UK, The Oregonian, Design 360.

Caitlin Sweet '14

Featured in Paper Magazine, Posture Magazine & Feminine Moments. Exhibited in Queer Prophecies, San Francisco, & Heels on Wheels, Brooklyn.

“You don’t feel you’re contributing anonymously. We’re doing something real. Not just for us, but for someone else too”

Ryan Newsom, '15


Design Build


The first year of the MFA in AC+D begins with an intensive design build project facilitated by leading designers and makers. Over a two-week period, students meet with stakeholders and clients to identify goals and needs for the project, collaboratively brainstorm possible solutions, and consider material and budget limitations.

The project finishes with the collective fabrication and installation of the final product. Project facilitators, who have included Butch Anthony, Steve Badanes, Jack Sanders, and Portland designers Sara Huston and Kari Merkl, model the skills for hands-on engagement, effective time management, and strong client relations. This rigorous project requires teamwork, teaches effective collaboration, and reveals the importance of process.

Incoming students learn the strengths and weaknesses of their peers, practice effective communication, and gain familiarity with studio workshops and tools to establish a strong foundation for the rest of their graduate experience.

Projects have been completed with Project Grow, Donald E. Long Juvenile Detention Center, Outgrowing Hunger at East Portland Neighborhood Garden (EPNG), and North Portland’s New Columbia Neighborhood.

High Desert Field Trips

Each year we take our students out of the studio and into the world for short immersive trips including Joshua Tree, CA and the Judd Foundation in Marfa, TX. Andrea Zittel’s outpost is located in the California High Desert next to Joshua Tree National Park and the students are to tour and visit the glass camping pods at the Wagon Station Encampment. Other day trips include Salvation Mountain, the Noah Purifoy Foundation, and sound bathing at the Integretron. While in Marfa, the students stay at El Cosmico and engage Judd Foundation properties such as Donald Judd’s formerly private living and working spaces La Mansana de Chinati / The Block and The Studios: Architecture Studio, Art Studio, Cobb House & Whyte Building. Day trips include Judd's permanent installation in the Chihuahuan Desert, Prada Marfa, Ballroom Marfa, Chinati, and many galleries and designer/maker studios. El Cosmico is an 18-acre trailer, tent and teepee hotel and campground in Marfa, TX. Built in response to its surrounding landscapes, its aesthetic is influenced more by nomadic cultures than modern. El Cosmico embraces communal kitchens and outdoors showers and unmediated, unplugged experiences.

​2018 National Art Educators Association (NAEA) National Convention

AC+D facilitated a workshop at the 2018 NAEA National Convention in Seattle, WA, called “The Generative Potential of the Everyday.” Heidi Schwegler was joined by two alumni, Aaron DeLanty (MFA 2017) and Lauren Sinner (MFA 2016), to lead a workshop on how to be sensitive to the subtleties that surround us in order to generate a creative act.

​West Coast Craft Fair

In November 2017, Mel McKinley (MFA 2018) was awarded an Emerging Artist Booth at the West Coast Craft Fair in San Francisco. She was joined by Amy Santoferraro (Program Manager) at West Coast Craft Fair.

a fiber sculpture by Caroline Borucki, MFA in Applied Craft + Design

Sculpture Objects Functional Art and Design (SOFA) Fair in Chicago

Special Exhibition and Panel Discussion at SOFA

Thinking Through Making was a SOFA Special Exhibition and panel presenting four pillars of the ACD program: Mentor-Based Relationships in Higher Ed, the AC+D Design Build, Creative Entrepreneurship and Design Thinking with the Hand, and Material Exploration with Wild Abandon and the Hybrid Potential of a Studio Practice with ACD alum Eric Trine, former instructor of Entrepreneurial Studies Randy Higgins (designer at Felt Hat), Norman Teague, Lead Craftsman at the University of Chicago - Washington Park Arts Incubator, and Sara Black, member of Project Fielding (teaches girls, women and nonbinary folks to use power tools).

Design Week Portland AC+D Open Studios

City-wide design event

A celebration of the confluence of art, design and craft, our Open House for Design Week Portland welcomed members of the city's design community into our creative laboratory in the Bison Building for an exhibition, open house, and sale of products including ceramics, lighting, wearables, innovative devices, handmade books, domestic items, sculpture, and more in addition to conversation, snacks, free drinks, and music.

Post-Graduate Fellowships

The Third-Year Fellowship is awarded each spring to a graduating AC+D student. Fellows are provided with a space in the AC+D studio and have complete access to equipment, facilities, and faculty, enabling them to continue to refine the ideas and skills they have developed in the program. The Fellow becomes a resource for first- and second- year students, sharing his or her experience and perspective.

The AC+D Entrepreneurial Fellowship is an opportunity for graduates to continue the development of an Entrepreneurial Practicum project. The Entrepreneurial Fellowship helps foster the success of the early stages of a multi-faceted endeavor by providing access to the resources and community of AC+D. In this exchange, the Entrepreneurial Fellow is granted the following opportunities to take the next steps in launching their proposed enterprise: a stipend to cover expenses, space at the Bison Building, time in the studio, access to the facilities, access to Creative Entrepreneurship faculty and course auditing.

The Curator in Residence is awarded to a graduating senior. They receive a year long studio space and curate and install the in house Furthermore shows for both Fall and Spring semester. AC+D hosts a pop up gallery called Furthermore, a space in which Portland makers can explore the blurred boundaries between art, craft + design. Cultivated through the MFA in Applied Craft + Design Studios, Furthermore offers a venue for exchange and exploration. All exhibitions last 24 hours.

Summer Scholarships

MFA AC+D offers scholarships with both Anderson Ranch Art Center in Snowmass Village, CO and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Gatlinburg, TN. These allow a handful of AC+D students to take summer workshops with some of the nation's leading artists.

Get in touch

Get in touch with MFA in Applied Craft + Design Chair, Sara Huston, to schedule a tour or to learn more.