In 2017, Dr. Joyce J. Scott ’70 created a scholarship fund to support artists and designers of color from Baltimore City.
Although MICA has been training visionaries, activists, entrepreneurs, makers, and educators for almost two centuries, comparatively few of these artists and designers have been students of color. Each year, many full-time students—especially those who have been traditionally under-represented—apply for assistance to help pay for tuition and living expenses.
Dr. Scott knows about this challenge firsthand.
“I received a scholarship in 1966. Without it, I simply would not have been able to attend MICA—the tuition was unattainable,” she recalls. “I will be forever grateful for the financial assistance I received because it—along with invaluable mentorship from my mother, faculty members, and peers—set me on the path for a lifelong career filled with art and love. Without caring donors, MICA’s doors would have remained forever closed to me.
“Today, I make a concerted, personal effort to give back to the College that helped me become a professional artist. In addition to providing the initial investment in the scholarship that bears my name, I do whatever I can to support the next generation of talented young people with activities such as hosting on-campus workshops, participating in maker activities, and critiquing senior theses. I have never once considered these undertakings to be a burden. My debt to MICA and to the artistic village that raised me is so great that being able to give back to the College and to honor those that supported me is truly a blessing.”
A Baltimore native, Dr. Scott is a nationally and internationally known jewelry maker, sculptor, quilter, installation and performance artist, lecturer, and educator. She is best known for her use of small, delicate beads to craft messages of societal issues embedded in gender, race, and class. Her earliest art lessons were received at home from her mother, Elizabeth T. Scott, who was an internationally recognized fiber artist. In addition to her B.F.A. from MICA, Dr. Scott received an M.F.A. from the Instituto Allende in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
“My MICA education allowed me to become a MacArthur Fellow in 2016,” says Dr. Scott. “That’s one of the things that my time at MICA allowed me to achieve. Financial support opens MICA’s doors for a greater diversity of deserving students and will enable future generations of Baltimore talent to have similar success. It also gets us closer to a more equitable, more beautiful, and more real world.”
Dr. Scott is deeply committed to her goal of closing the financial gap that prevents students of color from earning a MICA degree. In the spring of 2022, she made a significant, personal contribution that enabled her scholarship fund to become endowed. As a result, the Joyce J. Scott Scholarship Fund will provide need-based scholarships—in perpetuity—that will allow Baltimore City’s talented young people to attain a MICA education, pursue their artistic dreams, and follow in the footsteps of a Baltimore icon.
MICA is proud to include Dr. Scott as a virtual speaker in the 2022 Commencement celebration so that she can share words of encouragement and wisdom with her fellow alumni.
To make a contribution to Dr. Scott's scholarship fund, visit mica.edu/give. For more information about how to support the College, please contact Angela Wheeler in MICA’s Advancement office at 443.690.7795 or firstname.lastname@example.org.