Academic FAQ

What classes are taught at The Center for Cartoon Studies?
The CCS curriculum focuses on “cartooning” (making comics) and all the skills and knowledge necessary to support that practice. This includes writing and drawing comics, a comics history class, figure drawing, graphic design, and desktop publishing skills to be able to print minicomics in the CCS production lab. See a first- and second-year course outline on our programs page.

When can I apply?
CCS has rolling admissions, and accepts applications at all times; however, students are admitted on a first come, first accepted basis. CCS only matriculates students for the fall academic term. Check our application checklist to see everything you will need to apply to CCS.

Where can I find the application?
You can download a pdf copy of The Center for Cartoon Studies admissions application, or apply online, in the Admissions section.

What is the difference between the Master of Fine Arts (MFA), Two-Year Certificate, and One-Year Certificate programs?
There is no difference in tuition, class schedule, faculty, resources, or graduation requirements between the MFA program and the Two-Year Certificate. The only distinction is that the Two-Year Certificate program is intended for students who have not earned a Bachelor’s Degree. CCS is authorized to award MFAs to students who hold a Bachelor’s Degree. A One-Year Certificate is awarded to students who do not complete the Thesis Year.

CCS also offers a Two-Year Certificate to MFA conversion class, which allows past graduates who have later earned a Bachelor’s degree at another institution to convert their CCS Two-Year Certificate to an MFA with minimal effort and expense. CCS does not have a Bachelor’s program.

Is CCS accredited?
The Center for Cartoon Studies has degree-granting authority through the State of Vermont Agency of Education to award Master of Fine Arts degrees and certificates to eligible students. Approval for degree-granting authority is with the Vermont Agency of Education, is overseen by the Vermont Higher Education Council, and is aligned with the standards of the New England Commission of Higher Education. CCS is not accredited. CCS created the comic The Center for Cartoon Studies Accreditation Question with alum Andy Warner `12 to help explain why CCS currently chooses not to be accredited.

I previously studied a non-art discipline. Can I still apply to and attend CCS?We love art, english, writing, history, philosophy, religion, and graphic design majors, and those with a liberal arts or science background. Limited drawing skills are OK if they are offset by a fearless commitment to putting images on paper. We’ll help you get to where you want to go.

Does CCS accept international students?Yes! Please check our International Student page to see some of the visa requirements and other special considerations for international students.

Does The Center for Cartoon Studies offer courses during the summer?
Yes. During the summer and winter breaks CCS offers in-person and online workshops. Visit our workshops page to see our upcoming offerings.

Tuition FAQ

Does CCS Offer Scholarships?Yes! All accepted incoming students (MFA/certificate programs) are eligible for merit-based scholarships at the beginning of June. If you would like to be considered, please make sure all of your application materials are submitted before then. Individual awards are as high as $10,000 or as low as $2,500.

For second year students (MFA/2-year certificate programs) The Ed Koren Memorial Scholarship Fund awards a $5,000 scholarship to a second-year CCS student whose work in or out of the studio enriches the cultural and civic life of Vermont.

For Summer and Winter Workshops we offer general need-based scholarships and BIPOC Scholarships. You can find out more on the workshops scholarship page. Vermont residents who are 18+ are eligible for full workshop tuition through the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation’s Advancement Grant

Does CCS offer student loans?
CCS partners with Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC) to offer private educational loans. Detailed information about their loan programs and how to apply can be found at VSAC’s Choice Loan website.

Are there work study opportunities at CCS?CCS usually has a number of employment opportunities for students: Schulz library staff, facilities assistants, archivist, gallery workers, etc. The needs change each year, so make sure to inquire about these positions when applying.

CCS does not participate in the federal work-study program.

Can I work a part-time job while attending CCS?
CCS structures its curriculum Monday through Thursday (generally 9am-5pm) so that there is a three-day weekend every week, to allow for the large quantities of studio time required to draw comics. Some organized students are able to juggle a part-time job while attending CCS, but with the rigorous course load, it would be very challenging to work full time while attending CCS. Locally, students work at bookshops, grocery stores, restaurants, after school programs, freelance illustration projects, etc.

Do I need my own computer to attend CCS?Students are required to provide their own laptop capable of running Adobe’s Creative Cloud software (inDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat) . This laptop will be used in many different classes and gives students industry-standard tools to do all the production work for the dozens of minicomics they will produce while at CCS.

iPads are not a sufficient substitute for a laptop due their inability to run inDesign.

Student Life FAQ

Does The Center for Cartoon Studies offer assistance with locating housing for students?
Yes. We have several resources for students, including housing and dorm-like rental opportunities located directly across the street from the CCS. We send additional information about housing to admitted students, and have a message board where community members post the availability of rental units or shared housing opportunities.

Do I need to have a car to live in White River Junction?Many CCS students do not have cars. White River Junction is very walkable, with shops, restaurants, and two grocery stores all within walking distance.

White River Junction, VT is a village located in the Town of Hartford, VT, which is part of a region called the “Upper Valley” which includes neighboring towns like Norwich, VT; Hanover, NH; West Lebanon, NH; and Lebanon, NH. Advanced Transit is a free bus system that connects these towns daily (M-F) from 6:30am-8pm and on Saturdays, from 10am-8pm.

White River Junction also has an Amtrak station which offers a daily connection to New York, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C., and a Greyhound station, which connects all over New England and Montreal, Canada.