About the College

Born of a pioneering spirit, Massachusetts College of Art and Design is the nation’s first independent public college of art and design—and the first art school to grant a degree.

MassArt's founders dared to imagine a better future for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and to believe the path to it lay in creativity. Their goal in establishing the Massachusetts Normal Art School was to educate students in the creative process, which would in turn lead to the development of the mind, body, and spirit.

The institution they created was dedicated to producing drawing teachers required in schools throughout the commonwealth, while at the same time training professional artists, designers, and architects. It proudly opened its doors in 1873 to anyone with talent and the will to succeed-at a time when access for everyone was all too uncommon.

True to its history, MassArt continues to envision all that is possible and strives to reach it. Our history sets the direction for our future.