The Stanford Summer Arts Institute is a three-week, residential enrichment program for students interested in exploring the arts, creating interdisciplinary connections across music, art, design, and film.
In the McMurtry art building, participants gather in the courtyard and paint.

Arts Enrichment

Not for credit or grade, Stanford Summer Arts Institute encourages high school students to pursue their passion for the arts, discovering new fields and interdisciplinary questions.

Stanford is a hub of innovation in the arts, with a rich tradition of excellence in music, art, and film.
Art and Technology
Located in Silicon Valley, the arts at Stanford push creative and scientific limits, fusing the digital and visual world of technology and art.
Music and Sound
Going beyond the classroom format, explore the act of performance and music in the recital hall and also record and analyze sounds out in nature.
Creative Expression
Art spurs creative thinking which is essential for researching, understanding, and designing solutions to problems found in any discipline.
Community of Artists
The residential format allows participants to live with other creative peers, with scheduled free time that can be used to visit campus museums and do casual arts and crafts.

Vibrant Arts Scene at Stanford

The arts are thriving at Stanford. From 2006–2011, there was a university-wide effort known as The Stanford Arts Initiative that sought to enhance strengths in existing arts programs, create new arts facilities, and integrate the arts throughout the life of the university.

Museum Resources

Stanford’s famous art museums allow participants to see everything from ancient to contemporary art at the Cantor Center for Visual Arts or the adjacent Anderson Collection.

Unexpected Intersections

The arts do not exist in a vacuum at Stanford. Instead, researchers and artists collaborate to create innovative solutions to problems in medicine, city planning, engineering, and more.

Music and Performance Culture

The state-of-the-art Bing Concert Hall attracts world-renowned musicians and performers throughout the summer and the school year.

The first time I watched a movie after taking the Music, Technology, and Culture class, I really felt like I understood the message of each scene so much better as I became aware of diegetic and non-diegetic sound. I was amazed by how much I was able to apply what we learned in class to watching films more critically in everyday life.

Stanford Summer Arts Institute Participant

Past Projects and Activities

Stanford Summer Arts Institute offers participants an environment to think, design, and build.

Each class has hands-on projects and many have a dedicated final project. Past examples of such assignments include writing and performing new music, building products in a maker space, curating a personal photography portfolio, and designing parks and open spaces that respond to the campus environment.

Expert Instructors

Andrew Watts

Andrew Watts

Instructor, Music and Technology

Derek Ouyang

Derek Ouyang

Instructor, Architecture and the City

Ethen Wood

Ethen Wood

Instructor, Architectural Design: Craft and Making

Lauren Toomer

Lauren Toomer

Instructor, Art and Anatomy

Michiko Theurer

Michiko Theurer

Instructor, Why Music Matters

Portrait of Will Stribling

Will Stribling

Instructor, Film Production


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Stanford Summer Arts Institute offerings are now part of Stanford Pre-Collegiate Summer Institutes.

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