Give to MICA

MICA's Giving Priorities

Empowering students to realize their full creative potential

MICA has established clear fundraising priorities to support its mission of fostering creativity and innovation in the arts. Among its key focuses are initiatives to enhance student scholarships and financial aid, ensuring accessibility and inclusivity in arts education. Additionally, MICA seeks to invest in state-of-the-art facilities and technology to provide students with cutting-edge resources and environments for artistic exploration and development. Furthermore, the college aims to bolster its faculty support and professional development programs, nurturing a community of exceptional educators who inspire and guide the next generation of artists. 

Explore more about these fundraising priorities below and how MICA aims to sustain its reputation as a leading institution for art and design education while empowering students to realize their full creative potential. 

The gift of scholarship empowers MICA students to pursue their artistic education, creative practice, and professional careers unencumbered by the financial burden of tuition. 96%+ of MICA students received some form of financial aid. Donor support is essential to sustaining and expanding our investment in our students.

As they worry less about college finances, students engage more fully in their MICA experience. As a scholarship donor, you are able to give to a program / department or demographic that you are passionate about.  You will have the opportunity to meet the student who benefits from your gift at our annual scholarship appreciation lunch. 

Support MICA Scholarships 

Gifts to MICA’s Annual Fund allow MICA’s leadership to say “yes” to innovative programs, and hands-on learning opportunities. Every annual fund gift helps MICA continue to deliver a world-class education to its students by supporting its immediate needs and priorities. Annual Fund contributions are unrestricted, which means they provide the college with an often crucial funding source for emerging opportunities and pressing campus needs.

Unlike the college’s endowment, the Annual Fund is built with both large and small gifts from thousands of donors that are pooled together for everyday, urgent expenses. The fund then returns to a zero balance at the start of each fiscal year (July 1) and is replenished throughout the year by alumni, parents, and friends. 

Give to the Annual Fund


Animation & Media Arts

Starting this fall, MICA will launch its new Animation and Media Arts Department. This new department brings contemporary media practices together in order to create new synergies and connections. Comprising of programs in animation, film/video, photography, game design, interactive arts, and sound arts, the department will allow students to move fluidly between these media forms. Increasingly, artists are integrating a variety of practices and media into their artistic endeavors. The Animation and Media Arts Department will foster this integration.  

Center for Social Design  

The Center for Social Design (CSD) is an interdisciplinary center dedicated to demonstrating and promoting the value of design in advancing equity and social justice, and to inspiring and preparing the next generation of creative changemakers. In addition to housing MICA’s M.A. in Social Design program, CSD operates practice-based studios and partners with public and private organizations to address complex social problems. 

Over ten years of collaboration with partners in the public and social sectors across Baltimore has reinforced our commitment to increasing the social literacy of designers so they have a better understanding of the issues of equity, power, race and privilege that exist at the heart of the social problems we aim to address.

Our award-winning Practice-based Studios bring students from a variety of disciplines together with outside partners from government, nonprofit and business sectors to identify opportunities, generate ideas, and make tools for positive social change. To date, we’ve brought together more than 500 students across 12 disciplines at MICA to collaborate with outside partners on more than 100 projects.

In 2019, the Center for Social Design was awarded a $1 million endowment gift to expand and sustain our pioneering work at the intersection of design and public health. A generous commitment from philanthropist George L. Bunting, Jr. enabled the Center to secure matching funds from the Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative Fund (MEIF), a state program created to attract and retain top innovation talent and to spur research in scientific and technical fields at colleges and universities. 

The Made You Look Initiative is a multi-year, Maryland Department of Transportation-funded collaboration between MICA’s Center for Social Design and community partners to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety in three Baltimore neighborhoods: Bolton Hill, Reservoir Hill, and Station/Greenmount West. The project management team uses a community-empowerment approach to develop and implement creative interventions, such as reflective wear, a street lighting project, community toolkits, and community conversations about pedestrian safety and cycling.

The Ratcliffe Center for Creative Entrepreneurship (RCCE) is designed to help train a new generation of artists and designers to become entrepreneurs and meet societal challenges to empower students to forge creative and purposeful lives and careers. This center is made possible thanks to a $5 million gift from the Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation. Building off MICA's already dedicated commitment to helping creatives develop innovative, socially-conscious businesses, the RCCE is a comprehensive center to meet the evolving needs of students and alumni in the new creative economy. 

MICA's annual UP/Start Venture Competition is an initiative of the RCCE focused on incubating and building creative business ventures within the MICA community. Working with industry partners, UP/Start provides mentorship and capital to help nurture ideas into sustainable businesses. 

The Ratcliffe Center for Creative Entrepreneurship will be housed in a renovated space in the Creative Learning Commons of the 81 Mosher Street Building. The comprehensive center will further help to train a new generation of artists and designers who develop and launch innovative business solutions to meet societal needs and challenges; increase multisector external engagement and partnerships with students and faculty; and advance the field of creative entrepreneurship across campus and beyond. 

MICA's Pre-College Art and Design Accelerator Program (ADCAP) is an intensive college-level experience designed to help high school students (sophomores through seniors) make the leap from just making it through high school to becoming college graduates. All ADCAP classes are college-level, and combine college preparedness training, targeted mentorship, specialized tutoring, and portfolio development to build their competitive application to a four-year undergraduate program.

There is an undeniable need to create an equitable pipeline for local high school students to gain the confidence and skills needed to become competitive college applicants and to successfully complete a four-year degree. Improving educational access for creative talents who aspire is a key component of the College’s comprehensive and formalized community-based strategy to serve our city’s young people of color living in low-income households. Currently, we have enrolled 44 Baltimore City high school students in grade ten (15), grade eleven (15), grade twelve (14) hailing from 12 different schools.

  • 98% of our students say that they feel included with a sense of belonging
  • 97% of our students say that ADCAP always encourages empathy and establishes a safe inclusive space for students to share without fear of bias
  • 95% of our students say that ADCAP always creates an overall environment that is positive, mutually respectful, relaxed, and supportive
  • 93% of our students say that ADCAP always builds trust and encourages the sharing of ideas and feedback to strengthen the program

The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Foundation partially funds the year-long initiative.  Additional support is needed for undergraduate scholarships for graduating high school ADCAP participants, technology and laptop needs, and additional resources for art materials and pre-college preparation.

A robust endowment is crucial for MICA as it provides long-term financial stability, supporting academic programs, scholarships, and faculty development. These funds ensure the institution's ability to attract and retain top-notch faculty, maintain state-of-the-art facilities, and offer financial aid to a diverse student body. Additionally, a strong endowment enables MICA to respond to emerging needs, foster innovation, and weather unforeseen challenges, contributing to the institution's longevity and impact in the field of art and design education.


The historic and iconic Main Building will be updated and renovated to serve as a center for public engagement through programs and exhibitions, student learning spaces through studio and fine arts programs and for leadership, admissions and administration.

Currently, the Main Building is home to painting and drawing studios, undergraduate photography and foundation departments, two departmental galleries, the offices of undergraduate admissions and academic affairs, and the office of president. Though it is no longer the College’s only academic facility, it remains the heart of MICA’s campus and one of the principal cultural landmarks in Baltimore and the historic district of Bolton Hill.

The Main Building is in dire need of rehabilitation of its unique glass and iron roof as well as renovation of outdated restrooms, accessibility ramps and public and academic space throughout the building.  This building serves all of MICA’s students during their time at MICA through academic and studio classroom space throughout the facility as well as office, exhibition and meeting space.  The critical role of the building would be in jeopardy without securing the integrity of the building through these much-needed renovations.


Interested in learning more?

Office of Advancement


The Annex 116-118 W. Lanvale St. Baltimore, MD 21217
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