Connect. Collaborate. Create.

The Artist Collaborative is a two-year program open to incoming students who possess a holistic appreciation for, and involvement in, the arts (visual, performing, and written). The program fosters a collaborative approach to art making and creative problem-solving. Through courses, activities, and a May term trip to an arts destination in the U.S. or abroad, you will explore your calling as a creative in the twenty-first century. Students don't have to be planning to major in an art-related subject to be considered for the Artist Collaborative!

Program features and benefits

  • Receive a travel voucher to cover the cost of traveling for an Artist Collaborative May term course.
    Travel destinations may change—cohorts have traveled to Indonesia and Northern Ireland in the past. The May 2021 trip will be to England and Wales. Please note: travel vouchers do not cover the cost of visas or passports.
  • As part of a group of students with similar interests, explore faith, vocation, and your calling. Together, you'll study topics such as arts and social justice, visual culture, entrepreneurship, creative thinking, and leadership.
  • Collaborate with other members of the cohort to create, perform, and exhibit work that makes meaningful contributions to pressing issues both locally and globally.
  • Connect to the vibrant art scene in Grand Rapids. Programming possibilities include field trips, films, performances, exhibitions, open studio nights, and cohort gatherings.

Who qualifies

  • You must be admitted to Calvin by January 1, 2021.
  • High school seniors planning to enter Calvin University in fall 2021.
  • Students who wish to participate in arts activities while at Calvin or who intend to study in arts-related academic programs such as art, creative writing, graphic design, dance, film and media, music, and theatre. You only need to indicate an interest in the arts on your application to be considered for the program.

Next steps:

If you wish to get involved with the Artist Collaborative at Calvin University, you will need to do two things:

1) Express your interest

Let us know you want to be considered for this program and we'll be in touch soon! The deadline to submit this short questionnaire is January 1, 2021.

Note: On this form, you may also choose other special programs for first-year students for which you'd like to be considered.

2) Apply to Calvin

Complete Calvin's application early in order to be admitted by February 1. Without your application, you will not be considered for this program.


After you express interest in the program and complete your application to Calvin, here is what you can expect to happen:

  1. Invitations to attend an Artist Collaborative interview weekend on March 5–6, 2021 will be sent in early February. The invitation will include a travel voucher to pay for part of your trip to Calvin if you live more than 150 miles from campus. You will have the option to stay on campus at Calvin's Prince Conference Center.
  2. This invitation includes visiting campus to learn more about the program and to interview for the opportunity be selected as an Artist Collaborative member.
  3. Prospective students will be notified of their acceptance to the program by early April 2021. Students not invited to participate will be put on a waiting list for the Artist Collaborative program.

Program details

Each year, 24 students are selected to form a new Artist Collaborative cohort. The program spans each student's first and second year at Calvin.

Here is a tentative look at the first two years. Program details for fall 2021 are still being finalized.


Year One


Year Two

Fall Semester / Interim  Fall Semester / Interim  
Enroll in a one-credit First-Year Seminar course that is reserved for Artist Collaborative members. All first-year students are required to take this course Attend two arts-focused events with other Collaborative members 
Enroll in a required DCM (Developing a Christian Mind) course in preparation for the cohort's interim trip   
 Spring Semester Spring Semester 
Enroll in a Visual Arts course reserved for Artist Collaborative members. This course will satisfy one of your 'core' (general education) requirements Presentations of creative and collaborative work completed with other members of the cohort 
Presentation of creative and collaborative work completed with other members of the cohort The option to travel with the Collaborative during Calvin’s May term 
Attend two arts-focused events with other Collaborative members
Help welcome and host prospective Artist Collaboratives during the preview weekend! 


Paula Manni

Paula Manni

Arts Programming Assistant
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