Noah Humes, ’17 BFA Communication Arts
Otis College’s Black Creatives Institute is focused on developing an inclusive and affirming campus climate for incoming Black-identified students in an effort to increase: student engagement, first- to second-year retention, and degree completion.
Fostering community among Black-identified creatives by providing holistic support of their personal growth, identity formation, cultural development, and career development to create a stronger sense of belonging within the Otis College community.
Student Learning Outcomes:
As a result of participating in the summer bridge program, students will:
- Gain a strong network of creative colleagues through peer engagement and support.
- Explore and expand upon their identity as a Black creative.
- Develop tools around self-efficacy in order to foster self-confidence and personal empowerment as a Black creative.
- Gain an in-depth understanding about campus resources that will assist students in being successful personally, academically, and socially.
- Develop strategies and skillsets to actively engage in their academic experience, including studio preparation.
How to Register:
If you self-identify as a Black creative and are an incoming new student who would like to participate in this free program. Registration will open up in mid-May, 2021.
Who is Eligible?:
All incoming new students are eligible for this program. This program is focused on Black-identity development and being a Black creative and will offer opportunities for students to self-explore and build connections around this focus.
Lanise Howard (’20 BFA Fine Arts), left, with artist Kara Walker
Program Will Take Place:
This year, the Black Creatives Institute will take place in-person in the Residence Hall on campus with a small contained group over the course of three days as an immersive experience prior to Orientation Week. Monthly meet-ups and programming throughout the academic year will take place as well. We will implement rapid COVID-19 tests prior to the start of the program, requiring all participants to move in August 14 in order to ensure everyone is safe. Students will be required to submit proof of vaccination or be able to receive the vaccine upon move-in, as well as a rapid test in order to be as safe as possible. Students can request an exemption (medical or religious/philosphical) from receiving the COVID-19 vaccine by going to the Student Health and Wellness website.
Participating students who are not fully vaccinated* need to move in on August 6 for their 7 day quarantine and testing.
* Students will be considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series (such as Pfizer or Moderna) or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine (such as Johnson & Johnson's Janssen vaccine)
The program dates are as follows:
- Sunday, August 15–Tuesday, August 17, 2021
- Move-In will happen on Saturday, August 14 in order to account for rapid COVID-19 testing/vaccinations prior to the start of the program
- students who are not fully vaccinated* need to move in on August 6 for their 7 day quarantine and testing.
- Monthly Cultural Wealth Sessions, occuring September through April covering the following topics:
- Academic Success and Resources
- Career Development
- Financial Literacy
- Identity Development
Program Design At-A-Glance (all times are PDT):
Gena Smith (’21 BFA Fine Arts), right, with curator Zoe Whitley
All Participants will receive the following upon successful completion of the program:
- Industry Mentor - Students will be paired with a mentor who works in the art and design industry as a mid to senior level creative, and in the area of focus the student is interested in. These mentors are connected to BOND Creative, which is an agency that places creatives across various art and design organizations.
- Faculty Mentor - All students will receive a faculty mentor who will be their source of connection to Otis College and serve as a support person through their first year.
- $100 Graphaids Gift Card: All students will receive $100 gift card to Graphaids, the College's art supply store.
This program is completely FREE! All interested students must register for the program and will receive more information on the program schedule.
Can I Participate Virtually?:
All students participating in this program are ecouraged to participate in the program in-person, and to live in the residence hall for free during the program. Each program session will build upon each other and provide a comprehensive experience that will allow students to build community among each other while networking with creative mentors such as faculty, staff, and continuing students. The Black Creatives Institute will also offer social programming in the evenings for incoming new students to get to know each other in a more casual way, allowing them to develop a sense of belonging with our Otis community. However, if students must participate 100% virtually, they can do so during certain events, as not all events will have virtual options. We will work with the participants around which events they will eb able to access and attend and be sure they are still able to gain a meaningful experience.