Founded in 1907 by Frederick Meyer, a German cabinetmaker, whose vision was shaped by the Arts and Crafts movement, California College of the Arts (CCA) is noted for the interdisciplinarity and breadth of its programs.
California College of the Arts educates students to shape culture and society through the practice and critical study of art, architecture, design, and writing. Benefitting from its San Francisco Bay Area location, the college prepares students for lifelong creative work by cultivating innovation, community engagement, and social and environmental responsibility.
As an educational and cultural institution, CCA believes in fostering the artistic and academic excellence of our students and faculty. We cultivate intellectual curiosity and risk-taking, collaboration and innovation, compassion and integrity. As a global citizen and good neighbor, CCA believes in its role as a proponent of social justice and community engagement. We promote diversity on our campus by improving access and opportunities for underrepresented groups, and we see this endeavor as vitally enriching for everyone. We value sustainability and believe that as a school of the arts we have a unique ability and an ethical responsibility to shape a culture that is more environmentally responsible. We understand the importance of creative economies and the role of artists, designers, architects, and writers in solving social, cultural, environmental, and economic problems.
We offer degree-seeking students 22 undergraduate and 13 graduate majors in the areas of fine arts, architecture, design, and writing.
Two campuses, one dynamic college
The Bay Area is a known global hub for technological and cultural innovation. Our two uniquely positioned campuses place you among the most exciting environments for career inspiration:
- business & technology
- entrepreneurial arts & crafts
- fine arts galleries
- international communities
- manufacturing & design
- nonprofit social justice
- sustainability & ecology
- writing and literature festivals
San Francisco: CCA's San Francisco campus is located in the Potrero Hill neighborhood, next to the city's design district and within just blocks of the University of California at San Francisco's Mission Bay research campus. The San Francisco campus location is in what is now referred to as the "innovation corridor." Oakland: Four beautifully landscaped acres in the charming Rockridge district comprise the historic Oakland campus, located just two miles south of the University of California at Berkeley. Campuses combined, CCA currently enrolls approximately 1,950 full-time students.
Accreditation & Degrees
CCA is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB), and Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Degrees Offered
- bachelor of architecture (BArch)
- bachelor of arts (BA)
- bachelor of fine arts (BFA)
- master of architecture (MArch)
- master of arts (MA)
- master of business administration (MBA)
- master of design (MDes)
- master of fine arts (MFA)
- minor in Visual Studies
- minor in Writing and Literature
Center for Art and Public Life
The Center for Art and Public Life focuses on important issues in community development, service learning in arts education, new models of practice in community-based arts, and cultural diversity and youth development through the arts.
CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts
The Wattis serves as a forum for the presentation and discussion of international contemporary art and curatorial practice.
Among the college's noted alumni:
- painters Nathan Oliveira and Raymond Saunders
- ceramicists Robert Arneson, Viola Frey, and Peter Voulkos
- filmmaker Wayne Wang
- conceptual artists David Ireland and Dennis Oppenheim
- designers Lucille Tenazas and Michael Vanderbyl
Programs taught in: