by Thalia Garcia
Pre-college programs are extremely important for DASH students. They provide first-hand knowledge of the college experience and help prepare students for going away to school. Underclassmen should definitely research the many options available to participate in summer pre-college.
This summer, I was awarded the opportunity to travel to New York City for three weeks with 29 of my DASH classmates to attend the pre-college program at the School of Visual Arts. At SVA, I met people from all over the world. One of my dorm-mates was from Mexico and another was from France. Studying alongside students from other states and countries, I earned college credit for a drawing and painting class that truly broadened my concept of art and gave me many new techniques to take back with me. Classes ran from 9am-4pm, Monday-Friday. Participants could choose from several fantastic courses such as cartooning, sculpture, printmaking, screenwriting, illustration, and many more.
Above and beyond amazing art classes, SVA provides pre-college students with hundreds of cultural opportunities to visit museums, to see Broadway shows, and to take tours of the city. I got to see four Broadway shows and visited four major museums during my stay. There is a survey process before the program begins to sign up for these activities, but I was even able to attend outings I had not signed up for – just by showing up. Exploring Manhattan together with other students during free time also made this experience truly unforgettable.
Each year, approximately 30 DASH students are selected for this SVA pre-college program, which is sponsored by the de la Cruz Collection and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Rising juniors and seniors are eligible and must be nominated by their art and design teachers. Travel, tuition, tech tools, and spending money are covered by the program. The selected students become members of the Young Designers’ Consortium. After returning from New York, the consortium members put together a show the next school year featuring art and photos they created during their summer at SVA. This year’s show will be presented on November 27th in the DASH Gallery.
Check out this awesome short film featured on the DASH PTSA Facebook page. Made by PTSA intern Gabriela Sharpe, the video does a great job showing what the SVA Summer Pre-College experience in New York City is all about.