Creative summer classes for rising 9th - 12th graders

Pre-College One-Week Commuter Intensives are taught by expert faculty in an abbreviated one-week schedule, letting you develop your vision and skills for five full days while getting a taste of the UArts campus experience.  

One-Week Intensives are non-credit, non-residential, and do not require an application.  These courses are offered across four sessions.  You can participate in one class per session.  Cost per course: $560. 

Summer 2019 courses and dates will be announced in November 2018.   

— Week 1 July 9 - 13 — Week 3 July 23 - 27
  Drawing   Street Photography
  Glass Exploration   Painting
  Photography I   Jewelry + Metal Design
— Week 2 July 16 - 20 — Week 4 July 30 - Aug 3  
  Comic Character Design   Graphic Design
  Figure Drawing   Portfolio Prep
  Creative Writing   Screenwriting

Each class meets Mon - Fri, 10am - 4pm, with a break for lunch.

July 9 - 13

Cost per course: $560


Drawing is the most basic, rudimentary art and design tool — and it is a fundamental component of all creative disciplines. If you have not had formal training in drawing, here’s the place to start. Instruction will focus on drawing from life, including still life, models, and landscape. You’ll explore foundational drawing techniques such as light, shadow, rendering, perspective, and composition. Working in classical media such as pencil, charcoal, and ink, you’ll develop essential observational skills and several works suitable for inclusion in a portfolio. Nude figure models will be used in this course.

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Glass Exploration

In this intensive course, you'll gain an introductory understanding of various glass processes including flameworking, kiln-working, and cold working. You'll learn the vernacular related to various glass processes, as well as complete a variety of glass projects requiring both teamwork and cooperation. By the end of the course, you'll have a hands-on introduction to this compelling medium.

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Photography I

Move past your camera’s automatic mode to take your photographs to the next level. Learn the fundamentals of photography — aperture, shutter speed, ISO, lenses, and depth of field — while digging into composition, light, color and tonality to create dynamic images. This digital class offers time for hands-on shooting within Philadelphia’s distinct landscape, along with in-class photo analysis and group critique. A DSLR camera is required for this course.

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July 16 - 20

Cost per course: $560

Comic Character Design

Looking to create the perfect protagonist — or adversary — for the story you want to tell? Work from your imagination to develop and design original characters. Use a variety of traditional and digital media to work through a series of thumbnail sketches that evolve into highly-rendered images suitable for various applications — illustration, animation, comic books, cartoons or graphic novels.

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Figure Drawing

Drawing the figure is both challenging and rewarding — and can be crucial for many forms of artmaking and design. This course will allow you to focus exclusively on articulating the human form on a 2D surface. Instruction and demonstrations will help you develop observational skills as well as strategies for checking for accuracy. You’ll primarily work from skeletons and models as you learn basic anatomy and skeletal structure, gesture, volume and foreshortening to gain knowledge of figuration that you can utilize for future projects or apply to other media. Prior drawing experience is helpful for this course. Nude figure models will be used in this course.

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Creative Writing

Conjuring up a plot is one thing. Executing it effectively is another. Merge your great ideas with exacting delivery by developing the elements and subtleties that transform a compelling anecdote, thought or observation into enduring prose.

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July 23 - 27

Cost per course: $560

Street Photography

Follow in the footsteps of pioneering street photographers such as Eugène Atget and Henri Cartier-Bresson — and contemporary artists like Vivian Maier, Diane Arbus, and Bill Cunningham — by capturing the city’s spirit through your lens. Explore camera control along with essential photographic concepts such as “the decisive moment”. You’ll put these concepts to use on walking trips to local Philadelphia parks, markets, and galleries, where you’ll transform the conventional into the exceptional and hone your distinct perspective of the world around you. Previous experience using a camera is preferred for this course.

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Gain a basic introduction to the language of the oldest art discipline. You’ll sharpen your observational, color and spatial understanding as you work from still life setups and figure models. The course will begin with instruction on fundamental painting techniques and studio processes such as surface preparation, color mixing, paint application and composition — and personalized instruction along with in-class critiques will further develop your critical and technical foundation. At the end of the course, you will have several pieces suitable for inclusion in a portfolio. This course is perfect for beginners, however, prior drawing experience is recommended. This course is taught in acrylics. Nude figure models may be used in this course.

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Jewelry + Metal Design

Design and construct original metal jewelry or small sculptures in this studio-based course, gaining a hands-on, working knowledge of metalsmithing techniques in the process. Piercing, soldering, riveting, stone setting and finishing are all explored using silver, bronze, and copper. Produce small-scale metal works and learn valuable techniques for jewelry-making.

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July 30 - Aug 3

Cost per course: $560

Graphic Design

Design is everywhere in our modern world — posters, publications, album covers, apparel, digital and other media utilize graphic design to convey messages to viewers. Design and popular culture have grown more intertwined through recent history, and this course aims to explore this relationship. You’ll focus on the principles and possibilities of visual communication, including graphic form, type design, layout, image treatment, and sequence using the Adobe Creative Suite. Investigate the influence of design on trending topics while mastering the technical skills involved in this relevant profession.

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Portfolio Preparation

Critically evaluate your visual arts college application portfolio in this dynamic and useful course. Work with a variety of 2D media to create four to six works suitable for inclusion in your portfolio, including foundational design projects and observational drawings. Discuss strategies for presenting and photographing your work. At the end of the course, you’ll review your portfolio with a UArts admission counselor to assess its strengths and areas for improvement. This course is open to high school juniors and seniors. Nude figure models will be used in this course.

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All great films began with a brilliant script. An engaging screenplay is essential to a compelling movie. Effectively-written screenplays help directors cast the right actors and turn a story into a captivating visual narrative. Learn industry terminology, character development, scene building, story structure, and the importance of conflict. Through screenings, class discussions, and exercises, you’ll learn how to conceive of a story for the screen, write a detailed outline, and create a draft of a short screenplay. Workshop ideas with your classmates and turn your movie premise into a screenplay reality.

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Learn the basics of composing three-dimensional forms, from structure and materials to tools and execution. Using clay, you’ll focus on handbuilding and explore fundamental techniques such as how to use clay modeling tools and build armatures to create several sculptural works.

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Courses in the One-Week Commuter Intensives program are taught by artists and creative professionals. Many of our faculty teach in the degree programs at UArts. Our expert instructors are seasoned educators and dedicated artists who enjoy the opportunity to share their expertise and collaborate with the next generation of artists.

Summer 2018 Faculty Include

Kate Brown

Drawing, Figure Drawing, Portfolio Preparation
Katie Haire

MAT '11 + BFA '10

Hogan_Sean Headshot
Sean Hogan

Janet Iafrate

Creative Writing
Kaitlin Kerr

BFA '09

Jewelry + Small Metals
Jeff Kilpatrick

Comic Character Design
C Majuri head shot
Chelsea Majuri

Graphic Design
Erin Murdock

BFA '16

Glass Exploration
Andrea Poulsen

BFA '05

Photography I: The Essentials, Street Photography
UArts Pre-College Summer Institute for High School Students - Sculpture Faculty - Hope Rovelto
Hope Rovelto

Sculpture (Clay)

Tuition + fee: $560 per class.

  • Register online: Use the  Register Now  links below each course description.
  • Register by mail: Complete the Registration Form and submit it with full payment to the Pre-College office.

    Fax: 215.717.6538
    Mail: The University of the Arts, Pre-College Programs
    320 S. Broad Street  |  Philadelphia, PA 19102
    Visit: The University of the Arts, Pre-College Programs
    Terra Hall, Room 909 (9th floor)
    211 S. Broad Street  |  Philadelphia, PA 19102
    Call: 215.717.6006

Students will receive a syllabus & supply list prior to the first day of class. The items on this list must be obtained by the student. The cost of supplies varies by course and ranges from $30 and $150. Please contact the Pre-College office for class-specific estimates.

Discounts and scholarships must be reflected in the payment calculation at the time of registration; no refunds will be issued retroactively to correct overpayment.  Students registering with a discount cannot register online.  

Child of Alum Discount
Children of a UArts, PCPA or PCAD alum are entitled to a 10% discount (on tuition only). The parent must list the school, major studied, and year of graduation on the registration form. 

Returning Student Discount
If a student has participated in a prior Pre-College Summer Institute or Saturday School program at the University of the Arts, they are entitled to a 10% discount (on tuition only). Please enter the term attended, year, program, and the course on the registration form. 

  • OWI Tuition is $510 + $50 Registration Fee  Discount Amount = $51 

Space permitting, registrations for One-Week Commuter Intensives will be accepted on an on-going basis.  One-Week Intensives are non-credit and non-residential.

Students who participate in the One-Week Commuter Intensives are expected to adhere to the Student Code of Conduct.
Visit Policies to learn more

Scholarships are not available for One-Week Commuter Intensives. 
Visit Policies to learn more


Request more info

Contact Pre-College
Pre-College Programs
211 S. Broad St, Terra Hall 909
Philadelphia, PA 19102
(215) 717 - 6430