Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Craft/Material Studies

School of the Arts

 
Program description

The Department of Craft and Material Studies explores the language of ceramics, glass, wood, fiber and metal. The department offers both a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Craft and Material Studies and a Master of Fine Arts in Fine Arts degree with concentrations in five disciplines: ceramics, fiber, furniture design, glassworking and jewelry/metalworking.

Students are encouraged to learn and explore through the traditional craft media. Together, faculty and students hone, improvise and redefine ancient technologies with new technologies; they bend and blend concepts and materials.

The Department of Craft and Material Studies is housed in a state-of-the-art facility that provides a safe and excellent physical environment in which to work. Students have access to well-equipped studios in each of the five media areas. The department shares the facilities with the departments of Sculpture, Painting and Printmaking, and Kinetic Imaging.

Career opportunities

Craft and Material Studies Alumni acquire different strengths and talents based on their research interests. One of the most obvious career paths that a BFA in Craft and Material Studies offers is as a professional artist. This may also include a Master’s degree in the Studio art, which is one path that the BFA prepares students for.  Other career paths include: Ceramicist, Glass Artist, Jewelry Designer,  Enameling and Metalwork Artist, Fibers, Textiles and Weaving Artist, and Public Artist/Outdoor Sculptor. Graduates may also consider a career in the business of art, including: Artist’s Agent, Studio Assistant, Gallery Owner, Art Critic/Writer, Educator, Display  Designer, or Exhibitions Coordinator. 

Change of major requirements

Completion of the Art Foundation Program is a prerequisite for entry into all fine art and design departments. Students are required to submit their application here: http://arts.vcu.edu/admissions/how-to-apply/current-vcu-student/

Typical Application deadlines:

For Spring: November 1st

For Fall: April 1st

A portfolio is required

(more information here: http://arts.vcu.edu/admissions/how-to-apply/current-vcu-student/)


Bachelor-level job titles
  • Ceramic Artist
  • Craft Artist
  • Etcher/Engraver
  • Fabric Designer
  • Fashion Designer
  • Fiber Artist
  • Fine Artist
  • Furniture Designer
  • Furniture Finisher
  • Furniture Maker
  • Glass Blower, Molder, Bender, and Finisher
  • Jeweler
Graduate and professional level job titles
  • Artist Agent
  • College Professor
  • Gallery Curator
  • Museum Director
Degree requirements in Bulletin
Plan of study in Bulletin
Highest level of math required
  • MATH 131
Science required
  • Core only
Foreign language requirements
  • No
Additional tuition/fees
  • Yes
GPA requirements (to progress/graduate in the major)
  • 2.0
Department name:
Department of Craft and Material Studies
Building/room location:
Fine Arts Building, Room 239
Campus (where 75% of courses are taken):
Monroe park
Phone:
(804) 828-1477
Email:
crafts@vcu.edu

Major map compass icon
Major map

Explore
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Take the Sophomore Seminar class and complete 3 of the 5 courses of intro level Craft classes.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Meet with a faculty member to discuss your personal and professional interests.
  • Take a service-learning class or volunteer to address a social issue (Hands on Greater Richmond).
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for the New Leaders Retreat or Alternative Spring Break.
  • Sophomore Seminar class introduces students to an overview of the field, local professional and emerging artists and their studio practice. Seek opportunities with these new connections.
  • Research VCUArts alumni for networking and mentorship opportunities.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Apply to research, internship and international travel grants and scholarships on SOTA and University website every year.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Join groups on LinkedIn reflecting specific careers or topics of interest.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • Take the Junior Seminar class (which introduces conceptual development) and begin taking upper level Craft classes.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research. 
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Work on developing your professional online presence.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least 1 year in advance of deadlines. Study for and complete any exams the summer before senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Create a website. Begin to work on your portfolio.
  • Create an annual budget for life after college.

Excel
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take the Senior Seminar (Capstone class) and Senior Studio class. Senior Studio is portfolio development course and is repeatable in the senior year.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Seek fieldwork opportunities with local artists or institutions for credit.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain feedback from professionals on your work.
  • Complete an internship.
  • Expand your local network by attending First Friday art openings and artist talks.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
  • Sign up for job alerts through Handshake and professional job boards.
Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Craft/Material Studies

School of the Arts

Concentration(s):
No concentration
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE GET REAL EXPERIENCE PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
Explore Year 1
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
Experience Year 2
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Take the Sophomore Seminar class and complete 3 of the 5 courses of intro level Craft classes.
  • Meet with a faculty member to discuss your personal and professional interests.
  • Take a service-learning class or volunteer to address a social issue (Hands on Greater Richmond).
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for the New Leaders Retreat or Alternative Spring Break.
  • Sophomore Seminar class introduces students to an overview of the field, local professional and emerging artists and their studio practice. Seek opportunities with these new connections.
  • Research VCUArts alumni for networking and mentorship opportunities.
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Apply to research, internship and international travel grants and scholarships on SOTA and University website every year.
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Join groups on LinkedIn reflecting specific careers or topics of interest.
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.
Year 3
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • Take the Junior Seminar class (which introduces conceptual development) and begin taking upper level Craft classes.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research. 
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Work on developing your professional online presence.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least 1 year in advance of deadlines. Study for and complete any exams the summer before senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Create a website. Begin to work on your portfolio.
  • Create an annual budget for life after college.
Excel Year 4
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Take the Senior Seminar (Capstone class) and Senior Studio class. Senior Studio is portfolio development course and is repeatable in the senior year.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research.
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.
  • Seek fieldwork opportunities with local artists or institutions for credit.
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain feedback from professionals on your work.
  • Complete an internship.
  • Expand your local network by attending First Friday art openings and artist talks.
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
  • Sign up for job alerts through Handshake and professional job boards.