PNCA Recognized As Top Fulbright Producer and One Of The Country’s Best MFA Programs

March 02, 2020

Graduate Fullbright and Gradreports badges for 2019/2020

Portland, OR – March 2, 2020 – Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) is proud to announce that in addition to its inclusion on the recent list of U.S. colleges and universities that produced the most 2019-2020 Fulbright U.S. Students, the college has also been ranked on GradReports’ 2020 list of the country’s top MFA programs.

Each year, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) announces the top producing institutions for the Fulbright Program, the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program that’s devoted to increasing mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.

Ellena Basada, MA ‘19 from PNCA received a Fulbright award for the 2019-2020 academic year to teach and conduct research in Germany, and is currently teaching English in an urban school with a large immigrant and refugee population. In addition, Basada is undertaking a research project on club culture in Berlin that identifies the space of the club as a commons.

“It is an honor to be recognized as a top producing institution for the Fulbright Program,” states Christopher Maples, Interim President at PNCA. “This is an extraordinary opportunity for our students to participate in the world’s largest and most diverse cultural exchange program, while also enriching the college through its direct engagement with this deeply respected program. This also is an excellent testament to the quality of PNCA’s faculty and our philosophy of preparing students for a life of creative practice.”

“We are delighted to see that the colleges and universities we are honoring as 2019-2020 Fulbright top producing institutions reflect the geographic and institutional diversity of higher education in the United States,” said Marie Royce, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs. “We are committed to the Fulbright Program’s goals of creating lasting professional and personal connections by sending passionate and accomplished U.S. students of all backgrounds to study, research, or teach English in communities throughout the world. These Fulbrighters serve as citizen ambassadors for the United States in their host communities, and we will benefit from the skills, knowledge, and global connections they build on their exchanges long after they return home.”

In addition to PNCA’s recognition as a top Fulbright producer, the school has also been ranked #22 on GradReports’ inaugural list of the country’s best MFA programs.

The GradReports ranking is based on graduates’ median salary and is one of the first to provide a data-driven, objective look at what students earn post-graduation. It uses data published by the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard in November 2019 to rank colleges in order based on their graduates’ median salary. To be considered, schools had to have reported a median salary for graduates for a given degree program.

“We’re thrilled and honored to be recognized as one of the best MFA programs in the country,” said MK Guth, director of Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies and associate professor at PNCA. “From the day our students enter PNCA, they start learning the skills to create and present their work professionally, and this recognition validates our school’s ability to set our students up for a successful career in the world of art and design.”

PNCA launched its first MFA (Visual Studies) in fall 2007, followed by a joint MFA in Applied Craft and Design in 2009. These were followed by the creation of an MFA in Collaborative Design (2012) and MFA in Print Media (2014). Most recently, PNCA introduced a joint MA/MFA program for students in the Visual Studies, Print Media and Collaborative Design MFA programs in 2017.

About Pacific Northwest College of Art

Pacific Northwest College of Art empowers artists and designers to reimagine what art and design can do in the world. Founded in 1909 as the Museum Art School in Portland, Oregon, PNCA offers 12 art and design Bachelor of Fine Art programs, eight graduate programs including Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts programs within the Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies, a Post-Baccalaureate program, and Community Education courses for artists and designers of all ages. Learn more at