Master of Fine Arts

The MFA is the highest degree in the creative practice of visual art.

An artist’s studio practice is best learned through self-design and execution. While we emphasize fostering private creative roles, our practice-based, multidisciplinary program also focuses on marketing your work in today’s creative professional fields. In our two-year, 60-hour curriculum of project-based thinking, you’ll design, create and explain your work. In other words: You’re the artist, it’s your vision, and it’s up to you to communicate it.

MFA project proposals can be based in painting, drawing, photography, animation, sculpture, video, interactive design, printmaking, illustration, installation, glass, ceramics and design.

As an MFA student, you’ll work with select faculty who provide one-on-one feedback. They will push and challenge you as part of a community that is supportive and rigorous, demanding and compassionate. You’ll meet weekly in the Graduate Seminar for group critiques with your faculty and peers. Our program features small class sizes, accepting only nine to 15 students per year. To gain exposure and insight from industry professionals, you’ll also work with an off-campus mentor or participate in a practicum. The degree concludes with a thesis project, written thesis paper and oral defense.

You can get even more information in our MFA Guidebook or join us on campus for an information session.

MFA FACILITIES

We’ve built an environment to fuel collaboration, experimentation and creation.

The CCAD MFA program is located on the second and third floors of CCAD’s Design Studios on Broad, a renovated early-20th-century auto dealership near downtown Columbus. The 13,700-square-foot graduate facility includes individual student studios, faculty offices, a lounge and an exhibition space. You’ll also have access to CCAD’s library, plus many labs, shops, computer complexes, darkrooms and studios.

MENTORSHIP EXPERIENCE

Your education isn’t limited to what happens in our classrooms in Columbus. As a graduate student, you’ll participate in an Off-Campus Mentorship Experience where you define what “Off-Campus” means to you. This could mean a residency in Ireland, a three-week endeavor at the Pilchuck Glass School in Seattle or working with a nonprofit just down the street. Maybe you’re looking to create a virtual mentorship with an internationally acclaimed artist overseas. Meant to be complementary to your CCAD education, this exposure to an outside business, community and/or cultural leader will be influential as you dive into a greater depth of understanding yourself as an artist. Your mentor is a resource for developing your professional skills, finding pathways to your desired career and more.

Student and alumni works

  • Thom Glick Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Thom Glick Work
    Fine Arts
  • Victoria Lavorini Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Victoria Lavorini Work
    Fine Arts
  • Erek Nass Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Erek Nass Work
    Fine Arts
  • Jill Raymundo Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Jill Raymundo Work
    Fine Arts
  • Rachael Rush Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Rachael Rush Work
    Fine Arts
  • Dalong Yang, poses, Fashion Design, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Poses
    Fashion Design
  • Jayne Struble Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Jayne Struble Work
    Fine Arts
  • Virginia Kistler Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Virginia Kistler Work
    Fine Arts
  • Kimberly Webb Work, Fine Arts, MFA, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
    Kimberly Webb Work
    Fine Arts

Careers

Our grads have applied the skills they built at CCAD to a variety of positions, fields and awards. They have also been featured in notable publications and exhibitions.

Accessory designer
Animator
Apparel designer
Architectural photographer
Art critic
Art Prize Finalists
Creative director
Curator
Designer
Exhibition designer
Fabricator
Faculty of Art and Design
Fashion designer
Fashion Photographer
Fine artist
Gallery director
Graphic designer
Illustrator
Marketing Director
Museum Collections Manager
Museum Director
New American Paintings
Photographer
Preparator
Product Design
Toy designer
Video Editor

Employers

  • Abbott Nutrition
  • Academy of Art University
  • Angela Meleca Gallery
  • Antonelli College
  • Art Institutes
  • Beats by Dre
  • Boss Display
  • Byrd Polar Research Center
  • CCAD
  • Columbus State
  • Dennison University
  • Flagler College
  • General Theming Contractors LLC
  • Igloo Letter Press
  • Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland
  • Nickelodeon
  • Ohio Art League
  • Ohio State University
  • Ohio University
  • Pizzuti Collection
  • Richard M. Ross Museum
  • ROTO Studios
  • University of Cincinnati
  • Whole Foods

Find the right internship, write a standout resume, interview well, and land the ideal job for you.

Visit career services

Credit hours

Requirement
Program Requirements 60
Total
60

Course information

Faculty

  • Professor
614.437.7488
Tom Gattis is the Dean of the School of Design Arts at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Dean, School of Design Arts
614.222.3237
Gordon Lee, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7297
  • Adjunct Faculty
614.437.7505
Joseph Kovach, Associate Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Professor
614.437.7328
  • Program Liaison
  • Visiting Faculty
614.437.7320
Julie Taggart is Dean of School of Studio Arts at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Dean of School of Studio Arts
614.222.4025
Stewart McKissick, Chair of Illustration, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of Illustration
  • Chair of Comics and Narrative Practice
  • Professor
614.358.6893
  • Adjunct Instructor
Hiroshi Hayakawa, Associate Professor, Academic Advisor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7303
Helen Hoffelt, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7301
Duncan Snyder, Chair of Photography Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of Photography, Film & Video
  • Professor
614.437.7278
Kathy McGhee, Associate Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7307
  • Associate Director of CORE Studies
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7289
Laurenn McCubbin, Assitant Professor, Illustration, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7453
Ernest Viveiros, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7284
Department Head of English & Philosophy Joshua Butts, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Director of CORE Liberal Arts
  • Department Head of Writing, Literature, and Philosophy
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7404
  • Associate Professor
614.437.7379
Jeannine Kraft, Department Head of History of Art & Design, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of History of Art & Visual Culture
614.437.7316
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7478
Georgia Tangi, Adjunct, CORE, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Adjunct Instructor
Joshua Bodman, Chair of Advertising & Graphic Design, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD)
  • Chair of Advertising & Graphic Design
  • Associate Professor
614.437.7226
James Lutz is an Associate Professor at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Professor
614.437.2381
Matthew Mohr is an Associate Professor at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Professor
614.222.3229
Assistant Professor Jeremy Baker, 3D Animation, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Assistant Professor
Associate Professor Suzanne Cotton, Fashion Design chair, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of Fashion Design
  • Associate Professor
614.222.3286
Rebecca Robinson, Assistant Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Interim Chair of Fashion Design
614.437.7413
Julie Abijanac, Associate Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Professor
614.437.7536
Assistant Professor Kelly DeVore, Interior Design chair, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of Interior Design
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7232
Associate Professor Charlotte Belland, Animation chair, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD)
  • Chair of Animation
  • Associate Professor
614.437.1062
Assistant Professor Delano Ellis, Industrial Design, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7319
  • Chair of Fine Arts
  • Professor
614.437.1060
Joel Gundlach, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7330
Tim Rietenbach, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.222.3250
Greg Thune, Chair of Industrial Design, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Chair of Industrial Design
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.7422
Kaname Takada is a professor in the Contemporary Crafts department at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7489
Assistant Professor Andy Friz, Animation, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Assistant Professor
614.437.1032
Danielle Julian-Norton, Associate Professor, Fine Arts, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Associate Professor
614.437.1058
  • Assistant Director of Graduate Studies
  • Assistant Professor
614.222.4020
Graduate Admissions Counselor John Cairns, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Graduate Admissions Counselor
  • Adjunct Instructor
614.222.3249
Carol Griffith, Professor, Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Professor
614.437.7237
Ric Petry is Director of Graduate Studies and a Professor at Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD).
  • Director of Graduate Studies, Master of Fine Arts
  • Professor
614.222.3227

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