Applications for Fall 2023 now open!

Program Description

MFA in Applied Craft + Design

The MFA in Applied Craft and Design (AC+D) program welcomes creative entrepreneurs and makers who elevate functional objects through intentional design and a focus on craft. AC+D students think through materials and reimagine the objects we interact with daily.  

The program is designed for students with advanced making skills from a variety of creative backgrounds. With an emphasis on defining a unique perspective, the AC+D curriculum focuses on all aspects of creative practice, from conceptual thinking to technical skills to running a business. By combining one-on-one mentorship with an exceptional lecture series and studio visits with regional makers and entrepreneurs, students get a look behind the scenes of what it takes to be a maker and run their own business. 

  As they work to create and market their designs, makers in this program are asked to consider their responsibility to the user and the larger world around them. AC+D students question their work’s sustainability, functionality, and understand that they, as makers, are creating culture.

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Student Work

I was especially drawn to the program's focus on "thinking through making" as I've always been able to think best when I'm making things.

Bukola Koiki '15

Program Highlight

Design Build

Every fall the AC+D program offers a community focused engagement project called the Design Build. Past community clients have included, the Black Education Achievement Movement, Urban Leauge, VOZ Workers' Rights Education Project, Escuela Viva Community School, Outgrowing Hunger, Albertina Kerr's Port City Project Grow Initiative and the Donald E. Long Juvenile Detention Center. From day one, incoming students learn to center a values based practice, develop effective communication and gain familiarity with studio workshops and tools to establish a strong foundation for the rest of their graduate experience.

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Get in Touch

Get in touch with MFA in Applied Craft + Design Program Chair, Sara Huston at sbhuston@willamette.edu, to schedule a tour or to learn more.

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