The institution has been operating since 1929. Richard S. Stephens is the pioneer of the school. He was also a creative director for a magazine known as Sunset at the time. The university has succeeded in helping many learners to achieve their dreams in arts and design. According to Mr. Stephens, there was a shortage in the number of professional artists. He believed that the Academy of Arts University would bridge the gap by offering the skills necessary for artists to succeed in their career. The schools would remove all the barriers of the enrollment of new students. It is one of the educational institutions that has embraced innovation over the years to ensure that the students are equipped with the latest skills.
The Academy of Art University has continued to modernize its structures and curriculums to meet the changing needs in the job market. Due to the curriculum used by the school, its graduates are hired by multinational firms such as Apple, Nike, EA, and Zynga. Currently, Dr. Elisa Stephens is the president of the school while Emeritus Richard A. Stephens is tasked with chairing the board meetings. The growth of the institution can be attributed to the commitment from the two business leaders.
The number of learners at the school has increased tremendously to reach more than 18,000 in the recent years. It has been ranked first in terms of size as compared to the other schools that specialize in arts and design.The founder of the institution is known for his passion for the industry. The virtue has been passed to the other leader of the school. Some of the areas of specialization include acting, advertising, animation, fashion, graphic design, music production, and photography.
Earlier this year, there was an event in the school where the learners were required to redefine the meaning of good design and also to come up with new designs that are fit for people with disabilities. The individuals with the disabilities have a hard time when choosing the clothes to wear comfortably. The participants of the event showcased innovative solutions. Some of the most common disabilities include missing toes or fingers.