The Visual Arts Department at SOTA is an academically challenging program created to help students develop their own style through carefully designed curriculum. Courses are taken in sequence, one each semester of the sophomore year beginning with the required basic drawing and design classes. After completion, students may then pursue photography, sculpture, graphic design and advanced drawing and painting. Class instruction is integrated with science, math, music, dance and humanities courses in order to create a deeper understanding of shared elements and concepts.
Our downtown location provides a rich urban environment, and through our partnerships with the University of Washington, Metro Parks, Tacoma Art Museum, Museum of Glass, Children’s Museum, Rialto Theater, Broadway Performing Center, students make full use of the institutions that were built to serve them. Drawing classes at SOTA are held both on campus and within the museums themselves.
Unique to SOTA is our Adjunct Artist Program. Students have the unique opportunity to experience instruction and learn from professional artists working in their own areas of expertise. Students may be introduced to any number of media, from printmaking, ceramics, plaster, glass, wood or metal sculpture: all depending upon the array of artists teaching at the school in any given semester. In this way, SOTA can offer a wide range of visual arts classes while still providing the depth of instruction required to develop personal style and ultimately prepare a professional portfolio for college entrance.
In addition to semester offerings, junior and senior students have the ability to work with professionals in their field through the SOTA Internship Program. During our January Term, students apprentice for 3 weeks through opportunities set up in bronze casting, architecture, arts administration, and education, to name but a few of the more than 50 internships available through the school. Many of the apprenticeships have worked into permanent paying positions for our students. Intended as a prologue to post high school planning, these unique offerings allow students to personally experience a wide variety of employment opportunities and guide them toward a career that underscores their passions.