Brian McDaniel

Aspire to Inspire

Academy of Art University is a private, nonprofit art and design school in San Francisco. The long-standing art program has been educating artists since 1874, providing them with the skills and resources needed to succeed in a competitive field. It has also made the Academy of Art University one of the world’s most highly respected academic institutions, devoted to improving education through research and innovation.

One thing that makes the Academy of Art different from other schools is that it offers unique hybrid degrees for people who want to balance creative work with professional jobs and careers.

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Academy of Art University has an open admissions policy. Admission to the university is available to all prospective students who complete an application for admission and provide all necessary supporting documents, even if they have not established a high school diploma or GED equivalent. Students are considered for merit-based scholarships as part of their admission packages through the competitive selection process without having to submit additional applications or supporting documents.

The Academy of Art University has several buildings converted into creative spaces for art students. Many are co-op studios. There are also two housing complexes:

  • Ghirardelli Square is a ten-story student apartment complex with 250 units and is currently home to over 1,000 students.
  • Windship Village is comprised of eight buildings with hundreds of units.
  • It also has four restaurants and a cafeteria.

According to a recent study by the Academy of Art University’s Center for Economic Forecasting and Development, the school’s annual economic impact on San Francisco has grown to $1.4 billion—up from $877 million. This figure includes the value of non-residential construction projects and wages paid to faculty, staff and students. Additionally, an estimated 21,200 jobs were generated directly from the Academy of Art University’s presence in San Francisco, with total wages exceeding $1 billion.