Established in 1886, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) is one of the oldest independent art and design schools in the United States and it is located in the central business district of Chicago, known as the Loop.
The school was founded in 1866 as the Chicago Academy of Design, and after incorporating the Chicago Academy of Fine Art it became known as the Art Institute of Chicago in 1882.
Today SAIC has the largest school-museum campus in the United States as well as being one of the country’s largest accredited independent art and design schools. There are three main university buildings, namely the Michigan, the Sharp and the Colombus, as well as a host of other facilities dotted throughout the city.
Today the school is home to students studying at undergraduate, post-baccalaureate and graduate level. More than 30 percent of the population is made up of international students, representing more than 50 countries worldwide.
There are 18 diverse academic departments, giving students the opportunity to create their own programs of study or concentrate on one academic field.
The university offers a diverse range of study abroad options, allowing students to spend between a semester and a year studying at other art and design institutions in locations all over the world, including London, Paris, Seoul, Zurich, Vancouver and Sydney.
The university has produced some leading artists over the years, including Georgia O’Keeffe, expressionist LeRoy Neiman, fashion designer Cynthia Rowley and sculptor Richard Hunt. Other graduates include comedian David Sedaris, and entrepreneur Walt Disney.