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About the Program

The Artists, Community, and Teaching (ACT) Program partners with local schools, teachers, museum education departments, community arts organizations, and socially engaged artists and designers in order to provide positive learning experiences for students who are invested in working with diverse communities using their art and design skills. The best partnerships are mutually beneficial – the partner gains needed assistance while the students gain hands-on experience in the field, and in many cases either college credit or hourly wages.

Ways to Get Involved

Host a classroom observation or site visit: Several ACT classes include field trips to local arts organizations, museums, K-12 classrooms, public art sites and the studios of socially engaged artists and designers. Email if you would like to host a small group of ACT students.

Mentor an ACT student as your assistant: During the required internship/early field experience, juniors and seniors are assistants in school and community settings. K-12 public school teachers who hold CA Single Subject in Art Credentials can mentor a student pursuing either the Teacher Credential Preparation or Community Arts Engagement Minor. Socially engaged artists and designers, as well as non-credentialed teaching artists/designers working in private schools, museum education departments, correctional facilities, or organizations that offer community arts programming, can only mentor students pursuing the Community Arts Engagement Minor. In either case, the student interns a minimum of four and a half hours a week for ten weeks while earning two credits. It is a mutually beneficial partnership in which the mentoring artist/designer/educator has the eager assistance of the intern in their classroom or studio, while the internship provides an invaluable opportunity for students to map theoretical learning of their coursework with the realities of art and design education and socially engaged art practices in schools and community settings. Email if you would like to mentor an intern.

Have an ACT student teach at your school, museum, or community organization:

Students enrolled in the Teaching for Learning II course are required to teach their own art/design lessons in a school or community setting of their choice. Students who have already completed their internship/early field experience can also apply for the ACT Assistantship Awards, which places top students or recent alumni as paid assistants in a school or community setting of their choice. These are opportunities for ACT students to hone their teaching skills while providing meaningful art experiences to K-12 students and community members in often underserved parts of Los Angeles county. Email if you would like to host a visiting ACT student teacher.

Community Work-study Partners: Several local non-profit organizations have partnered with Otis to offer paid Teaching Assistant and Program Assistant positions, funded by the Federal Work-study Program. The ACT Program and the Office of Student Financial Services collaborate to allocate funds to partner sites at the start of each fiscal year, after which the work-study jobs are posted on the Otis Job Board, hosted by Career Services. Students can apply for these positions at the start of fall semester, and typically work for the same organization for a full school year, with the possibility of continuing during summer (depending on available funds, Federal Work-study eligibility, and schedule coordination). Current Community Work-Study partners are Armory Center for the Arts, artworxLA, The Getty Museum’s Education Department, LACMA’s Education Department, Kentwood Elementary School, reDiscover Center, Side Street Projects, and Venice Arts.

Hire an art/design educator from our qualified pool of students and alumni: Paid positions and for-credit internships can be posted on the Otis Job Board. Contact the ACT Director or Career Services if you are interested in hiring an ACT student or alumni to teach at your school or organization.

  • Armory Center for the Arts
  • artworxLA
  • ECF Art Centers
  • Homeboy Art Academy
  • Inner-City Arts
  • J. Paul Getty Museum's Education Department
  • KIPP Academy of Opportunity
  • LA County Museum of Art's Education Department
  • California Creative Learning Academy (formerly Los Feliz Charter School for the Arts)
  • Loyola Village Fine and Performing Arts Elementary School
  • Pasadena Unified School District
  • Pulse Arts
  • reDiscover Center
  • Santa Monica Alternative School House
  • Side Street Projects
  • Momentum Creative (formerly UCPLA Washington Reid Gallery)
  • Venice Arts
  • Local K-12 Schools:
  • Art Lab High School
  • Arts Education Branch, LA Unified School District
  • Buena Park High School
  • Central Los Angeles High School #9 School of Visual & Performing Arts 
  • Chuco's Justice Center
  • Cold Water Canyon Elementary School
  • Culver City High School’s Academy of Fine & Performing Arts
  • Culver City Middle School
  • Da Vinci Design High School
  • El Marino Language School
  • Farragut Elementary School
  • Goethe International Charter School
  • Helen Bernstein High School
  • Inner City Education Foundation (ICEF) Public Schools
  • John Burroughs Middle School 
  • John C. Freemont High School
  • John Glenn High School
  • Kentwood Elementary School
  • Los Angeles County High School for the Arts
  • Marina Del Rey Middle School
  • Orville Wright Middle/Aerospace Magnet School
  • Pasadena High School
  • Paseo del Rey Natural Science Elementary
  • Santa Monica High School
  • Skirball Middle School
  • St. Gertrude School
  • Venice High School’s New Media Academy
  • Village Glenn School 
  • Westchester High School
  • Westside Neighborhood School
  • Museum Education Departments:
  • A + D Museum
  • Arts and Cultural Organizations:
  • Angeles Gate Cultural Center
  • Art of Elysium
  • Los Angeles County Arts Commission
  • P.S. Arts
  • Social and Public Arts Resource Center (SPARC)
  • Spark Program
  • Watts House Project
  • Westchester/Playa del Rey Education Foundation