Jess Wu
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Pre-College Summer Session

Every summer, high school students spend three weeks at MCAD finding out what college life is really like.

The Pre-College Summer Session at MCAD is a three-week, residential program that allows high school students to try out their skills at a college level. Students pursue a major and receive three college credits at the program's completion.

Make the most of your time here! Don't be afraid to take some risks. It sounds cheesy, but really try to push yourself to create work outside of your comfort zone—you'll be surprised what you can do!

What surprised you the most about the Pre-College Summer Session?

What surprised me the most was how much I learned about the reality of having a “creative job.” Coming into the program, I knew I would learn a lot about graphic design and art history, however, I’m very thankful I had the opportunity to learn about what my future could look like as a designer (especially through Joshua’s Q&As and our visits to local artists' studios). Being an artist isn’t always sunshine and rainbows, but if you work hard and love what you do, it will pay off!

Jess working hard in the graphic design studio; photo by Forrest Wasko


What aspect of the program has had the biggest impact on you?

The people! Everyone in the program was so passionate about what they did, whether it was animation, comic art, painting, or design. I loved being surrounded by so many creative people because it really motivated me to create more work.

How has your artistic practice changed since the program?

I've definitely learned to work more efficiently. With only three weeks to learn how to use multiple Adobe programs, create tons of work, and complete a final project, I can definitely say I've learned how to better manage my time!

What was your favorite experience outside of the classroom?

I really loved visiting all the different museums and local studios around Minneapolis. There is always so much to see around the city and even the campus itself (my roomie and I spent an unhealthy amount of time browsing the MCAD Art Cellar).

Walker Sculpture Garden

Jess and fellow student Maddie Kneubuhl sketching at Minnehaha Falls; photo by Forrest Wasko


What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about attending the Pre-College Summer Session?

If you're thinking about it, do it! PCSS is an awesome experience that will give you

  1. A chance to meet people your age who are all passionate about art/design
  2. College credit
  3. A preview of campus life
  4. Three weeks to learn about something you are either curious about or already very interested in

Also, try to make the most of your time here! Don't be afraid to take some risks. It sounds cheesy, but really try to push yourself to create work outside of your comfort zone—you'll be surprised what you can do! 

 


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