Community Arts Journal

MICA's Commitment to the Community Arts

MICA has a long history of creative community engagement and is dedicated to the development and advancement of community arts models at several levels. Through its M.A. and M.F.A. in Community Arts, under the umbrella of the College's national Center for Art Education, and M.A. in Social Design and M.F.A. in Curatorial Practice, MICA prepares graduate-level students in the art of building community through collaboration in the arts. The Community Art Collaborative, an AmeriCorps-funded program, places graduate students and independent artists in intensive yearlong residencies with Baltimore nonprofit organizations to create, support and sustain arts-based programming, while the Community Arts Partnership program provides similar opportunities for undergraduate students each semester. The College's new Office of Community Engagement provides resources and support for MICA-affiliated projects, programs and courses that use art and design to strengthen communities and create positive, community-centered change. Social design initiatives include the Center for Design Practice, a multi-disciplinary studio that collaborates with outside organizations enabling the students to problem solve and use design to make an impact on society, and the Design Coalition class, founded 10 years ago as a MICA and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health partnership, which challenges students with social- and community-based design work with an emphasis on East Baltimore projects and relationships. Through MICA's applied and fine arts departments, students and faculty engage in real-world projects in collaboration with communities that focus on public health education, urban development, historic preservation, and the empowerment of Baltimore communities and the surrounding region.